forehand throw elevation

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forehand throw elevation

Postby xdck83a » Mon Jul 12, 2004 5:10 pm

The more I read here and in the PDGA forums I am gathering that I need more elevation to help increase my distance. I am an almost exclusive forehander and I generally keep the disc no more than 20 feet off the ground. All the material on increasing D seems to be tailored to the backhander. They talk about getting elevation increases while still keeping the nose down throwing a hyzer. Will the same principles apply to a sidearm throw? Help me please!
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Postby Blake_T » Mon Jul 12, 2004 10:00 pm

a lot of it depends on disc. newer discs like the flash, orc, illusion don't do well with a lot of height whereas older discs like the eagle, cyclone, etc. will require a lot of height for the carry.

it's a bit different throwing sidearm vs. backhand since it's not really possible to throw inside out, which is an easy way to get natural lift from a hyzer. the big booming hyzer flip is still possible, but the vector has to be directly out from the thrower where the nose is neutral to slightly down and not dependent upon the hyzer angle.
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Postby boru » Tue Jul 13, 2004 1:32 pm

The short answer is, yes, the physics of disc flight don't change, so the same principles apply to forehand as backhand.

However . . .

As Blake mentioned, the biomechanics are different. It's difficult to throw a nose-down hyzer forehand. That's not to say it's impossible, just an awkward motion. For me, a flat-anhyzer release is so much easier that I don't bother trying to hyzer flip for distance.

I've been experimenting with a high turnover shot lately, with mixed results. I've found that when I consciously try for height, one of two things happens. Most of the time, the disc holds its line nicely until the apex of its trajectory. At that point, my less overstable drivers (X, Z Talons) keep turning, but stop making forward progress, and end up short and way to the left. My overstable drivers (Monster, E Spirit) stall out at the top, and fade hard right or drop straight down. Neither one of these shots is particularly good for distance.

What works for me is to concentrate on ripping the disc low to the ground - no higher than head-level. On an average day, this will get me 350' on a nice tight S curve. When my delivery is at its best, the disc seems to find its optimal cruising height (~15' for a 400' shot) on its own.
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Postby xdck83a » Tue Jul 13, 2004 3:29 pm

Thanks guys, I appreciate the input. I'm in that 350 neighborhood now, I think I might have to resign myself to that since a backhand is a physical problem. You know what guys with short throws always say...size doesn't really matter! Boru, my typical drive is like yours, very low, very hot. I use my sizeable belly to get momentum, good leg drive, I have pretty good arm strenth, but I can't get 400. I do wrist exercises to try and build it up. Do you think I might be tightening it up too much by building wrist strength instead of keeping it loose? My snap will turn over anything if I want to...except the z-xs. For reasons beyond me, I have a hard time keeping it low, it really tries to float on me.
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Postby boru » Fri Jul 16, 2004 3:10 pm

What do you mean by anything but the Z XS? To me, the XS is pretty understable, and not well-suited to a power forehand. Backhand, I've noticed that mine seems to have a lot of lift.

My current recommendation for a forehand driver is the Talon. X will get more distance than Z but be harder to control. I carry both on big courses.

The key to big distance isn't so much having a lot of strength as applying it at the right time. You want to be smooth and whip-like until you feel the weight of the disc resisting your forward pull, then really rip it through. Be careful not to lock your wrist.
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