View Full Version : Semi-noob RHFH drive questions
08-25-2009, 12:22 AM
So I've been doing a good amount of searching, researching, and general reading about throwing FH and have a few questions. I ramble a lot, so cliffs notes at the end for the lazy. :)
Mainly, I'm having trouble figuring out if my technique is flawed or if I am simply overpowering my discs. I have a 172g Champion Monarch and if I give it an easy 1 step flick at about 60% power it goes 250ft+ fairly easily. If I go anywhere near 100% it just falls over and dies left, or rolls into oblivion. I have the same issues with my DX Orc and Valkyrie. Medium flicks produce great results, anything else is counter-productive. The results of a bad throw aren't as pronounced, but the discs behave relatively the same.
I think that my technique is pretty solid on the good throws because the disc flies without wobble, and I never experience arm or elbow pain. But none of the people I play with are really qualified to tell me what I'm doing wrong, or know much more about individual discs than I do.
What's really confusing me is that throwing my Star TeeBird at about 60-75% force can get me 280-300ft with the right form, but is consistently even with my Monarch when driving.
From reading about discs I think I'm going to try a Starfire, possibly even a Destroyer or Xcal. I've been playing casually for about 2.5 years or more, and aside from wanting more distance and consistency from my drives I do pretty well.
I know it feels like I'm overpowering the discs... but I'm not sure how to know for certain. They all have a 9 or 10 speed rating so that has furthered my suspicions.
One thing for sure is that I have an unconventional grip. I've since seen the one and two finger grips and have tried to use them without success. It significantly reduces the rotation of the disc for me, and takes anywhere from 70-100ft off my drives. My grip is more like making a fist, gripping the disc between my forefinger and thumb with all fingers clenched and my thumbprint above my index middle knuckle.
Cliffs notes: My Monarch dies at anything over 60-70% power, and my TeeBird can consistently match it's drives throwing both around 60%. I would like to know if this is a form problem, or a disc problem. Both go around 280ft with an easy 1 step RHFH drive pretty consistently. So, questions:
1) How can you tell when you are overpowering a disc?
2) What are signs of flawed form in a power RHFH throw? Any specific disc flight characteristics that could help me narrow it down?
3) What is a good distance from a Star TeeBird? Champ Monarch?
4) Everyone praises Starfire's for FH, opinions on that over a Boss/Excal/Destroyer?
Any, and all, advice or recommendations are greatly appreciated. Thanks!
08-25-2009, 12:49 AM
I noticed you grip the disc the same way I do, and i tee mostly RHFH. BH for a running tee just goes bad for me, and I got more power and distance in my FH.
I do notice if I overpower it, it will flip on me, thats how I know. So I usedrivers I use for diffrent tees (don't get me wrong, the Dragon is still my primary, and I use it alot, since thats the one I have the most experience with and know how it flies). Diffrent weights, models, etc. I'm getting pretty use to how much power I can put behind each one before I over power them and it flips.
That's just me, and to be honest, it may take a few diffrent discs for you too, and eventually you'll find that one that you can throw with all your might, and it'll do what you want.
When it comes to form, it can be a disc suriously curving, flipping, rolling. I notice that when I am in a hurry and dont care for my form. But eackh of us in my oppion is diffrent, so what is worng or right for me, may not be for you and vice versa.
Just keep practicing. Is the best advice I can give.
As for the other grips for a BH, I'm slowly practicing them, especially on short holes where i dont have to let it rip. May be worth giving it a try.
08-25-2009, 01:27 AM
Do you tuck your elbow in while driving, by chance? That is, when you release, is your elbow extended outward or is it pretty close to your body? I've found that keeping my elbow close to me ensures that all of the power is being concentrated from my elbow to my wrist. Thus, power and control are maximized. This keeps me from popping and rolling less discs in the air, as you seem to have mentioned.
08-25-2009, 01:50 AM
Thank revmatty, that's pretty much what I figured... just nice to hear someone else say it. I'm not exactly 'new' to the game, but I definitely don't know anyone with specific DG knowledge... so it's nice to know I'm not just psyching myself out.
jblough, I do try and keep my elbow tucked as much as possible. I would say that, at release, my elbow is about 3-4" away from my body. Not fully extended outward, but also not stuck to my ribs. On approach, I basically keep my elbow stuck to my body using mostly my forearm and wrist for what little backstroke I have. On my less powerful throws, it is pretty obvious most of my power is generated from my legs and hip rotation. When I throw harder(and run into trouble) I don't think I'm torquing my hips with a great deal more force, just trying to get more power and snap from the arm.
I'll have to try and focus more on my hardest attempts to see what(if anything) in my form changes. It's pretty hard to determine, though, and I don't have the means to record myself.
08-25-2009, 01:50 AM
If it were a form issue I don't think your teebird would be outdriving your other discs.
The fact that your teebird goes farther -at least to me- says it's your disc selection. If at 60% power you're throwing 280ft it sounds totally reasonable that you'd be turning over a monarch when you really try to let one rip. A teebird is somewhat overstable so it can handle a little more snap without it turning over.
Typically throwing sidearm produces a lot of spin which is why most who throw sidearm prefer overstable discs.
I'd suggest you find yourself something overstable. You might want to stick with a Firebird or Predator; you don't want to get a disc that's too fast for you.
In the mean time try lowering the outer wing of the disc (the end farthest from your body). This way the disc will have to compensate for the increased angle so maybe it'll go little flatter for you; this is known as a hyzer-flip. I'm backhand dominant so I'm not sure how well that will work for you.
08-25-2009, 01:56 AM
Am i the only one that wishes the X-Clone was still in production to answer his prayers? Right now I'd suggest a predator as something that would be a bit difficult to handle at first, but shouldn't take long to grow into.
08-26-2009, 11:45 AM
I'm not surprised that the Monarch is giving you fits. It's an extremely understable disc and will flip easily if you don't throw it just right. However, with the proper technique, even less stable discs can yield good results thrown FH.
No offense to Traver but I have a different opinion when it comes to the amount of spin on a disc. I'm not pretending to be a physicist here, merely expressing my observations. My experience has been that putting more spin on a disc has a neutralizing effect on stability--it makes both less stable and more stable discs tend to fly straighter and longer. It's kinda like a tight spiral pass between the numbers or a bullseye destined bullet, its the spin that makes it accurate.
When I first started trying to develop a FH, I found that just about everything I threw was turning over on me including these relatively stable discs: Ch Starfire, Star Wraith, Pro Destroyer, Ch Banshee, ESP Crush, ESP Pulse, etc...
They weren't turning over because of my "Lazer-rocket" arm, they were turning over because of poor form. I was inadvertantly releasing everthing on an anhyzer angle due to rolling my wrist over. I was also putting way too much arm into my throws and not enough wrist. There was more than enough speed on my throws but not nearly enough spin. The only discs that I felt I could throw without the threat of turning over were a Z Flick and an ESP Venom. These were the only pigs that could right themselves after an anhyzer release. Other than the obvious problems, I was forcing myself to try and throw these discs harder and harder to get any distance. This caused me to develop golfers elbow in my R arm.
Needless to say, I needed to make some changes. After reading the available posts on this site as well as discgolfreview.com, I began the slow process of reinventing my sidearm. Here's the list of things that have helped me:
1. Slowed arm speed way down. Learned to start the drawback and intitial forward motion fairly slow and not begin to accelerate untill the disc was approx. 8-12" out in front of the torso.
2. Learned to keep the disc closer to the torso throughout the throwing motion (keeping the elbow in); this helps keep the disc moving in a straighter line as opposed to a wider arc.
3.Learned to keep the wrist loose and "oily" up until the moment before the release at which point I consciously try to emphasize the wrist snap--the wrist goes from an open position, bent backwards to a closed position (like if you were to grapple a pole) very rapidly. This is the only real explosive part of the throw. This is the critical point at which the amount of spin on the disc is determined. I also try to visualize the disc springing off the tip of my middle finger. Timing is everything here and can take a little effort to get down.
4. Learned to follow through after the wrist snap. I keep my arm moving untill it comes across the chest and my R hand typically finishes up over my L shoulder.
5. Changed grip from the middle/index fingers facing up in to the bottom of the flight plate to where the middle finger is pressed firmly into the inner rim with the index lightly stacked behind it. This also caused the hand to switch from a horizontal oreintation to more of a vertical one. I beleive that having the hand in more of a horizontal orientation at the release point helps the wrist to resist rolling over.
6. Footwork. I use a very compact X step where my R foot passes just directly behind the left without too much of a gap. My final step with the left is not too long and I try to get a solid push-off with the R foot. The strong push off helps to get the R hip moving and then it should sequentially travel up the torso through the shoulders and the last thing that starts moving forward is the arm.
I'm not saying that what works for me is the best of what will work for everyone else. I am also wise enough to know that form is a constant work in progress and I still have a ways to go. Perhaps I will never be %100 happy with it? What I do know is that I can now throw a beaten up Star Wraith on a tight S-curve routinely over 350'. I can throw my Xcal about the same but with a very predicatable hyzer finish. I can throw mids and putters as well--I just have to remember to keep the arm speed slower and emphasize the wrist snap.
I realize that 350' is really nothing to brag about, its probably average at best. But it is the upper limit of what I can throw with good control. I have thrown less stable discs a good deal farther but the predictability drops off considerably. I still have much work to do. I do realize that technique refinement and not brute force is the answer.
08-26-2009, 03:42 PM
Thanks buzzinb. I, too, realize that my form can definitely use work... always. I just wasn't sure whether disc selection was also an issue, or if my form was just that bad. I have been trying to concentrate on my form the past couple of days and throws are definitely improving, but my Monarch is still giving me issues. Those form tips seem pretty solid, I'll definitely keep them in mind. Right now I think the biggest form flaw is my wrist snap, and I think my grip is a crutch for that. My grip allows the disc to snap in my hand slightly as well and I think that is why I get more distance from it than when I try a more conventional grip.
I will look into the Predator, too. Thanks for the suggestion Traver/colo.
08-28-2009, 12:54 PM
I throw my Teebird around 300ft easy. It is strange because I have found when I am throwing it relaxed I often get more distance from it than if I try to muscle my X-Cal. When I am throwing the X-Cal well it is a great disc, very straight and nice glide.
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