Newbie questions about snap

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Newbie questions about snap

Postby JacksWeather » Fri Jul 16, 2004 1:16 am

Firstly, I'd like to say I am a major newb to Disc Golf, but I feel this site has done a really good job of introducing technique to me, through the instructions on the site and also this technique forum. I've been trying to improve my drive for about a week now and basically come back to this page right after I go out and consistently throw anywhere in the 200's.

My biggest questions are regarding to snap. I read that the tendon bounce in the fingers is different than slinging the disc with your fingers. This fact makes me not understand bounce at all. Can you please explain/elborate on the difference between bounce and slinging the disc?

Also I'm confused about the tightening of the grip for the snap. How I'm thinking of it right now, is when you are using a power grip, your four fingers are curled around the edge of the frisbee so that the pads of your fingers are touching the inside of the rim of the edge, and the tips of your fingers are touching but not gripping the bottom of the disc. Is this a correct understanding of the power grip? If it is, I don't understand how a disc is going to come out of your hand if you tighten your grip...I feel really stupid for asking this question. But it seems like if you tighten the grip, that means you aren't letting go of the disc which will result in the disc not coming out of your grip. Is the disc going to just "rip" out since I'm theoretically throwing it so hard? Should my fingers be gripping the bottom of the rim more than the inside part of it?

I am just getting into working on my drive, its hard to think about it but not think about it at the same time for me. I don't think i am putting enough effort into bring the disc back, and pulling it forward close to my body. If I work on this will it significantly change distance? Will it help me discover what snap is? : )

Last question. I don't want to overpower my shots, but I also know that distance comes from big acceleration. In order to work on my technique should I concentrate very little on accelerating very quickly, and be more conscious of the whole rotating of feet, legs, hips, shoulders, arm, elbow, and wrist adding up to a quick release speed?

Thanks for the excellent advice on the site, and thanks in advance for your reply.
Today seems like a good day to toss a disc or two.
The one for hyzer-flipping, turning over right on que.
I try to throw just like that, but sometimes I really suck.
Some say I need to get the axing, chalk it up to bad luck.
JacksWeather
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Posts: 51
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2004 12:35 am
Location: Detroit, MI

Postby Blake_T » Fri Jul 16, 2004 1:53 am

i will answer your questions after i make a couple of brief comments and the answers to the questions i will give will focus upon what parts are most important for you right now.

first off let me say that i would not worry about snap very much at this stage in your game. from my experiences and my experiences teaching others, it can make your game a mess from anywhere from 1 to 12 weeks but yields benefit in the long run.

secondly, the conceptual aspect of snap and the timing necessary to actually increase it are probably not appropriate for you to be considering at this point in time of your game. in fact, i only recommend it for people who have found themself at that overly common plateau in the mid-300's and are willing to throw their game off for a while. some people are lucky and are able to bypass this plateau and throw 400+ without having to think about it. most people are not these people.

as for stuff you need to know, the article that got me throwing 340' after 2 months of playing disc golf is: http://www.discgolfreview.com/resources ... form.shtml

as for your questions on slinging vs. snap. i'm really not sure what you mean by slinging, but i am going to assume that you mean, actually letting go of the disc after you have gotten it up to speed. the key is that on drives, the disc must rip out of your hand. on approaches and finesse shots, you may use more of a slide grip, but for drives, you need to have a firm grip where the force of the disc trying to escape is greater than the strength of your fingers holding it in. the snap, or tendon bounce is simply a quick, unconscious motion of the wrist quickly coiling and uncoiling immediately before the disc rip.

if you think of a pitcher, they use an opposite bounce, where their wrist bends backwards and then bounces forwards right before the delivery. this is what separates the 85 MPH pitchers from the 98 MPH pitchers. arm speed can only take you so far, taking advantage of tendon stiffness is what pushes you over the top. however, in disc golf, you should be able to reach the 325-375' range without needing a lot of snap.

as for your grip questions, first, i will send you to:
http://www.geocities.com/discgraham//Grips.html
http://hem.bredband.net/area46/engelska ... tkast.html
these should cover basic grip forms and the swedish site has pictures displaying correct wrist orientation (which will help in both nose angles and maximizing snap). you should also try to make sure you have the disc resting in the seam (lifeline) of your hand starting at the base of the palm and extending to the spot between the middle and index fingers.

your description of the power grip sounds fine. however, the focus should be pressing the disc into the seam of the hand and base of the thumb (meaty part of the palm that moves when you move your thumb).
for now, i recommend not focusing upon trying to time the grip and it's probably easiest for you to "dial in" your grip strength before you even start your throw. while max D throws are going to take a lot of grip strength at the right times, for now, i will say to grip tight enough to where the disc does not wobble around in your hand and you can keep it oriented on the plane you want. once you get a feel for the disc rip, you can probably start experimenting more with grip strength, and pressure points, etc. for now, it appears you are letting the disc slide out or trying to release it, which i can say right now will rob you of a ton of power as well as not generate a lot of spin on the disc. with sufficient speed and force on the disc, it should eject on its own. this will probably take a bit of adjustment.

as for what to focus on when throwing, here is the focal points i will give for now (that i can add to later):
1) firm grip in the wrist down position (see swedish site for picture of "wrist down")
2) make sure you get good upper body rotation.
3) let everything happen in the order it should happen in. that is, focus on having clean and smooth footwork and let the natural progression of feet to hips to torso to shoulders to arm to disc happen. the legs are what really generate the power. think "quick and smooth" more than "strong and powerful."
4) keep the disc close to your body during the pull through.

other things will come into play as you get comfortable such as follow through, grip strength, snap, etc. but i don't think you should worry about it now. most of the snap related topics will only work if you have the timing down to perform the basic motion well and that doesn't really happen until you are throwing 325+ consistently and accurately.

let me know if you have any more questions.
Blake_T
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Postby JacksWeather » Fri Jul 16, 2004 11:38 am

cool thanks, ya I guess I was kinda wondering how to get up to the mid 300's too, and your 1-4 tips i think will help with that. I've already read through that instruction page twice :) I'll make sure to reread it as I continue to practice though. My life line on my palm sounds a bit different from what you describe, it starts at the base, but it kinda curves and stops halfway up my palm, hope that doesn't mean I'll have a short life...

I also wanted to add on about a discussion I saw on side arm in this forum. I can throw a sidearm maybe more accurate than a backhand, and just as far too. The thing is I haven't hardly worked on my sidearm at all, and when I use it I put so much less effort into throwing it. I kinda just drop my throwing shoulder, and sling my elbow and my wrist, and it'll goes farther than I expect every time. I can tell that my technique is far from perfect with the backhand though, and its obvious to me i should work hard on it. Where the forearm, is not perfect, but I still can't see it being improved upon enough for it ever to reach much farther than 400+.

Regarding it requiring so much less energy to throw the sidearm then a decent backhand, does that mean that my technique is just that bad with the backhand? Or do forearm drives feel like they take less energy then a proper backhand drive for everyone?
Today seems like a good day to toss a disc or two.
The one for hyzer-flipping, turning over right on que.
I try to throw just like that, but sometimes I really suck.
Some say I need to get the axing, chalk it up to bad luck.
JacksWeather
Noob
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2004 12:35 am
Location: Detroit, MI

Postby garublador » Fri Jul 16, 2004 12:46 pm

I've just started experimenting with my forehand throws and I'm finding that after just a few throws I'm about to where I was after a month of working on my backhand. The strange thing is my sidearm throw in ultimate was by far my worst. I threw chiken-wing over sidearm because I was much better at that throw. I have another friend who just started and is finding that his forehand is farther as well. It seems to me that for disc golf there's something inherently easier about throwing sidearm for a lot of people initially. I'm not sure about it being less effort, though. My arm feels pretty torn up after throwing a few sidearm throws.
garublador
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Postby Blake_T » Sat Jul 17, 2004 1:26 am

as for the reference to the lifeline, i meant to start it at the base of the palm in the lifeline and then have the disc go from there to between the index and middle fingers.

as for sidearm drives, the learning curve is faster but it has similar plateaus. the biggest difference in terms of exertion is the muscle focus. the backhand drive basically only has maximum exertion during the run up and follow through and the run up is really the only fatiguing one of these. the sidearm throw has much more exerted arm motion and has upper body vs. lower body fatigue.

the tomahawk/hook thumber is actually what i have found to have the fastest learning curve of all throws, and most people are able to throw 200-250 the first day, accurately. however, this is also the most common "crutch" throw amongst newer players and i shy away from teaching people early, except for the people who just cannot get a backhand and would benefit from a healthy dose of success.
Blake_T
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Posts: 5824
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Postby JacksWeather » Sat Jul 17, 2004 10:41 am

heh, thats funny what you said about the tomahawk, cause I've never been able to get that down. Not that I've practiced with it alot. I guess if there were as many sites explaining the tomahawk/thumber as there are sites that explain backhand and sidearm, i might have it learned though.

i've been practicing like everyday for almost a week now, and each time i get out i can tell i'm getting better, lately, i decided to reach back farther when winding up for the throw, and that helps me pull the disc through in a straight line. One thing I was wondering, is that blake often says how people should be able to get around 350 with decent technique and people often plateau there. I was wondering, are those maximums with the disc just going straight and level? Or would that be involving an s curve? The discs I throw go straight for a bit of time around 250 right now with a good throw and then always fade left at the end. Would it go farther if i got the disc to do a slight s-curve? or should i just still be trying to get it as straight and level as i can right now?
Today seems like a good day to toss a disc or two.
The one for hyzer-flipping, turning over right on que.
I try to throw just like that, but sometimes I really suck.
Some say I need to get the axing, chalk it up to bad luck.
JacksWeather
Noob
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2004 12:35 am
Location: Detroit, MI

Postby Blake_T » Sat Jul 17, 2004 12:45 pm

the overhand hook thumber is easy. basically, make a fist, and at the top of your hand, place the disc vertically, with the bottom facing away from the palm of your hand, curl your thumb around the rim. step up and throw it mainly forwards but slightly upwards, really hard, as if you were throwing a baseball.

the 350' plateau i reference because it can be done with simply good technique, whereas 450' will require great technique. 350' can be done with many throw inefficiencies, and with a variety of methods.

as for the line, i would recommend having it fly straight. a line drive s-curve will happen on its own when you get enough power, probably when you are starting to approach/clear 300' on a consistent basis. everyone will have a preferred line, especially depending upon what discs you use. i always recommend first learning with stable to slightly understable discs as it will keep the disc selection window open for the greatest period of time. committing to an overstable disc early will almost surely remove many discs from contention as "straight drivers," and often eliminate some of the longest and easiest to throw discs on the market.

i can hit 350' with a hyzer flip, a flattened hyzer, straight line drive, line-drive S, roll curve, pure anhyzer, anhyzer s-curve, straight hyzer, or gentle hyzer depending upon disc selection, height, how much fairway i have to work with etc.

the line you will probably gravitate to is most likely going to be the ideal line for your favorite disc. for example, a dx teebird is not very good for s-curves since they tend to hang and go way right if you get too far over on them. heavier teebirds fly very straight when thrown flat, lighter ones or broken in ones will perform best (straightest) with a flattened hyzer. a dx eagle on the other hand, performs best with an s-curve as it will finish fairly strong to the left if it's thrown with a straight flight. these discs fly well with a line drive s or for max D, they will probably need a big high anhyzer s-curve.

my big advice on this is that the "best disc" for you is going to be a disc that is meant to fly at or near the speed you throw at. as you add more power, you can throw faster and more overstable discs straight.
Blake_T
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