With a shot put personal best of 17.53m, Rachel Wallader lies 5th on the UK all-time rankings. In the latest edition of the ‘Tuesday Tips’ feature, Rachel takes some time out of her training schedule ahead of the Commonwealth Games to share her advice on how to succeed in the event.
“I have always believed that shot putters should be as athletic as possible with all-round abilities, which can be maximised by ensuring we train all of the physical qualities. This means maintaining a level of fitness, strength, power and agility through a balance of training systems. We need to be strong, fast and reactive, and all are equally important”.
“This is a helpful trigger word, which can be used throughout competition and training to help improve throwing. Push from the back of the circle; push the ground away as soon as you make contact with the right leg in the centre; finally push through the ball. Also, push your limits, but do it safely! Don’t needlessly push yourself to lift unsafe weights or carry out unsafe exercises in the gym, where the chance of injury is high. Push yourself steadily and progressively; throwers have a long ‘throwspan’ and can enjoy long athletics careers if we train and compete efficiently and safely”.
3) PERSONAL SHOT PUT
“I have had my own shot put for many years now, although the size of my shot and my preferred manufacturer has changed as my throwing has matured. I would strongly recommend that any thrower should experiment to try find an implement size and manufacturer that they feel comfortable with. Once you’ve found the one, go and purchase your own! This way you know you will always have a comfortable shot to throw with and one that you are used to. Having your own implement increases your confidence and reduces stress before competitions; never again do you have to worry if they will have an implement of the right size for your hands!”
4) BE YOU
“We are all guilty of watching technical videos of our role models and trying to copy them. One thing I have learnt is to work with what you have. As with any technical event, of course we need to take on board technical points and there are common elements that run through every shot put technique which need to be instilled. However, we are individual and we are all physically different. We need to work on, and with our own strengths and weaknesses – don’t worry if your technique is not exactly the same as someone else’s”.