The various branches of throwing in athletics – in which may be included putting the shot and throwing the javelin, the discus, the hammer, and the weight – are included in the Geld events, a department in which British athletes are not as expert as their foreign rivals. Scotland and Ireland, however, give greater attention to this branch of athletics than England.
Four of these events – javelin, discus, bamnier, and shot – are always included in the Olympic Games, and are often included in British programmes, but throwing the weight is a less familiar event. It ia performed in a manner somewhat similar to throwing the hammer, the thrower twirling round and round at an increasing rate before releasing the hammer, or thtj weight.
In putting the shot, the competitor uses one hand only. The arm is flexed, and the shot is placed close to the face. Just before the throw, the left leg is raised and then brought down to take the weight of the body, the right leg being used to push the body forward as the shot is released. An essential in the technique of putting the weight is the hop, which takes place in the circle, and which requires considerable practice to perfect. The shot usually weighs 16 pounds.
The hammer is thrown from within a circle, similar to that used in putting the shot. The hammer has a head of iron or lead, a handle not longer than 4 feet, and usually weighs 16 lb.
Throwing the weight is a popular event in athletic programmes in the United States of America, but it seldom figures at a British sports meeting. The weight is a round ball of iron or lead fitted with a pear-shaped or triangular handle, and usually weighing 56 lb. The competitor stands in a 7-foot ring to make his tluow. A throw of 36 feet and upwards is recognized as a good throw, but this distance has frequently been exceeded. Javelin throwing and discus throwing are unfamiliar events in Great Britain.