Monday, June 20, 2011

Land on one foot - part 1

I remember a long time ago reading an article of Parinella’s somewhere where he explained a better way to toe the line is to only keep one foot down to maximize your reach rather than trying to dig both feet in.  Such a simple tip, and it reminded me of my days before ultimate.  Before frisbee, my previous love was volleyball.  I used to subscribe to a volleyball magazine and there were always these quick 1 page articles with a  handy little nugget of wisdom (think Zip's Tips minus the sandwich eating suggestions).

So one of those tips I remember was for playing volleyball doubles.  When you’re the blocker, you have one other teammate behind you in the backcourt covering the entire court on their own and they’re typically backed up to receive a hard driven spike.  Imagine as the blocker who’s jumping in the air, the spike hits off your hands, pops up, and dribbles just behind you.  That’s a hard ball for your teammate to get to if they're positioned fairly deep.  The key to helping your partner out is to land on one foot.  By landing on one foot, you can land already turning toward the court, and hit the ground running giving you a better shot at making the dig.  If you land with both feet, you lose the time it takes your foot to hit the ground and pick it up to take your first step behind you.

Application to frisbee?  On a hanging huck where you mistime your jump.  How often do you see the disc hang, the receiver and defender both jump and miss (or tip the disc) and the disc lands softly just a few steps away?  Try land on one foot and hit the ground running with your other leg to make that second effort grab or D.  By hitting the ground running you’ll also increase your chances of avoiding getting landed on and being taken out in a pile up.

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