Does the timer countdown at competitions make you nervous? Do you sometimes shank that last throw that you get off in a frenzy in the last few seconds? The Timer of Death throwing drill is designed to help you with that final throw.
All the experts say that the secret to doing well in competition is to practice throwing, and it’s excellent advice. But how do you practice? Simply going outside & throwing a bunch of discs will definitely help, and will build muscle memory. That’s wonderful! But you can also target specific aspects of competition by doing different drills. Here’s how this one works.
Step One – Download the audio file at the bottom of this post to your phone. Or just play it from this blog post. Heck, play it on your computer while recording on your phone. Whatever. Do what you need to do to get the file. We won’t judge.
Step Two – Grab 20 discs (or however many you have) and go out to your practice area.
Step Three – Place your stack of discs on the ground by your feet.
Step Four – Hit the play button on the audio file. You now have 5 seconds to put your phone on the ground, before the drill will start.
Step Five – Every time you hear the announcer say “Three”, pick up a disc. Every time he says “Time”, throw the disc on the T of Time. You will have 2 seconds after “Time” before the countdown will repeat at “Three”. Repeat until you have thrown all 20 discs.
Step Six – Pick up your discs & start over at step three. Have fun!
When you first start this drill, you may need to pick up the next disc during that two seconds of dead time before the countdown starts, and that’s fine. Work until you can pick the disc up on Three. While you’re throwing, concentrate on getting a nice solid catchable throw. Add in any additional movements you may use in competition, like wiping slobber off the disc, or flicking the disc as a signal to your dog to go around you. Repeat this drill until you feel comfortable knowing that you have plenty of time to get off a good throw in the time allotted. Bring this confidence with you to the playing field! The next time the countdown starts and you have the opportunity for one more throw, relax and do it just like you did in practice!
Here is a short video demonstrating a couple repetitions of the drill, in case the instructions aren’t clear. (Shout out to our visual learners!)
Here is the audio file to download. I’d like to thank Jack Fahle, who not only gave me permission to edit his timer, but actually did it for me! I am immensely grateful. Thanks Jack! Thanks also to Matt Bilderback, who tortured his classes with this drill!
Pro Tip #1 – Do this drill while alternating grips with each throw. This will help you learn to easily & smoothly switch from one grip to another in your freestyle routine. An example of this might be: backhand, forehand, thumber, backhand, overhand wrist flip, forehand, staker, thumber, etc. Use whatever grips you’re familiar with, and alternate them randomly.
Pro Tip #2 – Use this audio file to practice freestyle moves like vaults & dog catches. Determine the correct timing for each action – cueing the dog, getting in position, and making the throw. Then find the verbal cue from the audio that fits the correct timing. Practicing with consistent timing will help make it feel natural, and lead to consistency when you add your dog. And you can get 20 repetitions in less than 3 minutes!