Throughout 2016, we will be posting a series of guides with the aim of improving our readers’ dodgeball skills around the world. We will cover the most common skills in dodgeball, breaking them down into their desired objectives, techniques and successful tactics.
This week: Throwing (part 1).
Throwing is one of the most essential skills to master in Dodgeball, but put in a weak throw at your opponent’s chest and you are more likely to get caught out than make a hit. This guide will help you to find a technique that suits you!
Orthodox grip: Hold the dodgeball in the same way you would a tennis ball,
with your hands spread out and fingers gripping tightly. Some people use the seams for extra grip. This is the best way to hold a dodgeball but fear not, small-handed people, there is another way…
Cradle grip: Flex your whole hand around the ball to
make a cradle between your wrist and hand that the ball can comfortably sit in.
No matter how you grip the ball, the main throwing technique should be similar…
Throwing power is determined by explosive power and technique. If you train at the gym regularly then look at incorporating rotator cuff exercises (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IV99PiiE0jE), but as this is worth a whole blog post in itself, let’s perfect that technique!
First, make sure to have a fast run-up so you aren’t throwing from a standing position. Run right up to the centre line so you are as close as possible to your opponent when you release the ball. You must put your whole body into the throw to make it powerful, so put your weight onto your front foot (the opposite leg to the arm you throw with). You are now ready to throw!
This brings us to throwing mistake #1: The swing.
The ‘swing’ is common in beginner players and happens when the player swings the ball around their body parallel to the ground at torso level. This does not engage the body’s most powerful muscles.
Throwing mistake #2: The shot-put.
To throw properly, your arm can be straight or bent, but your elbow must be above your shoulder to ensure you are not merely pushing the ball forwards.
After releasing the ball, make sure to follow through with your hips and shoulders to complete the throwing action. You should end up with your throwing hand near to your opposite trouser pocket:
There you have it. For more advanced throwing tactics, we will be posting a sequel but in the meantime get that technique down! One last tip is to video yourself throwing to ensure you aren’t making any of those pesky mistakes mentioned above.
Manchester Bees is one of the largest dodgeball clubs in the UK and have 2 international head coaches alongside 8 regular international players. As such, the club has a wealth of technical coaching experience and our sessions are one of the best places to come to in the UK if you want to improve yourself as a player (or just have fun playing an exciting new sport)!