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Author Topic: Becoming better at Handling  (Read 8415 times)
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« on: April 08, 2009, 09:39:40 PM »

I'm having trouble handling the disc.  I buckle under the pressure of the mark, my throws aren't incredibly accurate, I make mistakes on my throws, and I have trouble on my up-line throws.  Can I get some advice, some tips, maybe some drills I can do to improve myself and make myself a better handler?
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« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2009, 08:01:57 AM »

Keep throwing.

Disc skills are the easiest thing to improve in ultimate, because it's basically just repetition and practice. Even if you only have 2-3 focused throwing sessions a week, you should still be seeing an improvement.

If you're having trouble throwing against a mark, I'd suggest throwing on your lonesome and practising pivoting around an object (lamp post, tree, building) or the ever-reliable thrower-marker drill if you have friends around to throw with.

Don't throw mindlessly; you don't want to become a predictable thrower, then people will handblock you! Vary things - throw in fakes, differ your point of release, the length of your pivot and the speed of your throw.

Hope this helps.

thoughts and stuff - sifultimate.blogspot.com
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« Reply #2 on: April 09, 2009, 10:28:21 AM »

Throw every chance you get, throwing is just a repetitive motion. I think if your confident in your throws you won't care who is marking you, its more about knowing you can make the throw than it is about who is marking. I know if I were standing on the field ungaurded I could throw it to any spot on the field I wanted, the mark is just stopping me from throwing to the cone of space behind him which still leaves me anywhere else on field to throw to and I already know I can make those throws. Besides you have the all the advantages because you know where you want to throw and how to pivot to make that throw before he does, you also know whats happening up field and he doesn't. The only reason he should handblock you is if you try a dumb throw or throw exactly the same every time so he can predict it.   
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« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2009, 05:19:01 AM »

Keep throwing.

Throw every chance you get

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« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2009, 09:11:34 PM »

Don't just throw a lot.  Throw against a mark a lot.  Run the three-person marking drill (or do it with four people and no one has to run) so that you get countless reps with the pressure on.  Practicing too much without a mark and you'll develop bad habits. 

I'm not sure if you are on a practicing team but if you are every practice should start with a three-person marking drill where every player gets at least 25 opportunities to throw with a mark.  As soon as you start feeling comfortable with that have the mark encroach on your disc space and foul you and get used to throwing against that (and calling a foul when you throw).  If you can feel comfortable in a drill like that, when you get to a game and people aren't in your disc space you'll feel like you're throwing with no mark at all.


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« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2009, 09:39:00 PM »

Step one is to get better at the fundamentals of throwing.

Here's an analogy.  You play the guitar.  In the comfort of your own room you play pretty fine, but as soon as somebody asks you to play for them, you get your fingers crossed up and what you thought was easy becomes a lot more challenging.

Why?  When you're on your own, there's less pressure--you can get by dedicating relatively less attention to what you're doing...but as soon as you have some extra pressure, you have less attention to work with (because this other person/thoughts of them are occupying your mind somewhat), and what used to be comfortable now needs your full, undivided attention just to come close.

You can deal with this a couple ways--learning to get more comfortable under pressure is one way (marker drill, more game experience, etc).

I'd say that you'd probably do with some more focused work on your throwing though--you're making mistakes and losing accuracy.  These things have roots in your fundamentals--maybe you rush under pressure, or because you get tense you're using your arm to throw instead of your body.  You can cull out these root elements in pressure situations; marker drill is great for that. 

However, once you realize what needs work, you need to take the time and do some dedicated practice to get it right.  Don't ever JUST throw.  Picture a mark up against you, and take a second to focus, take a good step and make a good throw.  Build slowly from a point of being relatively unconfident even at half speed to a point where you don't have to think about it anymore--and then keep working to speed up those same fundamentals (for me: step out and be set before I throw, as well as grip the disc) until you reach game speed.

I wrote a lot more about getting to a game-ready state on my blog:

It takes some dedicated work, but it's doable.
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