How To Hold A Shot, Discus Or Javelin For Best Results

Learn The Basics Of A Sound Throwing Grip

The way a shot, discus or javelin is gripped can have a huge impact on a young athlete’s ability to generate optimal forces on the implement.

A poor grip will restrict performance. It can hamper improvement and can even lead to other associated technical errors.

Let’s look at the basics of a sound throwing grip for three common kids athletics events.

The Shot Put Grip


A photo that demonstrates how a shot being held in the hand can resemble a scoop of ice cream in a cone., which is a great analogy to use when teaching young athletes.

The Shot Put Grip

When gripping a shot, a young athlete should:

  • Sit the shot on the base of the fingers.
  • Hold three fingers behind the shot.
  • Hold the thumb and little finger to the sides.
  • Not touch the shot with their palm.

The shot in the hand resembles a scoop of ice cream sitting in a cone.

The Discus Grip

A collage showing the discus grip from three angles
The Discus Grip

When gripping the discus, a young athlete should:

  • Hold the discus flat against their palm.
  • Sit the edge of the discus on the pads of their fingers, next to their first finger joints.
  • Rest their thumb on the back of the discus.

The discus should “rest” or “sit” in the hand, rather than be held firmly. (It should fall out of the hand if the hand is turned over with the palm facing down).

The Javelin Grip

Close-up of a javelin grip

A Javelin Grip

The javelin grip that I like to teach is the “One-finger” grip.

When gripping the javelin using the one-finger grip, a young athlete should:

  • Hold the javelin at the back of the grip.
  • Rest the javelin along the palm (rather than across it).
  • Wrap the fingers firmly around the implement, with the index finger and the thumb behind the binding.

Over To You!

Have a go at teaching some kids these grips. I would love to hear how it goes! Let me know by leaving a reply/comment or by using the contact details below.

Further reading

E- Book:

How To Teach Shot Put To Young Athletes E-Book (plus bonus cheat sheet) 


How to Teach Shot Put to Young Athletes

How to Teach Discus to Young Athletes

How to Introduce Javelin to Young Athletes

CYA Membership Email

If this post helped you please take a moment to help others by sharing it on social media. If you want to learn more I encourage you to leave questions and comments or contact me directly.

20150614_154020-1Darren Wensor is a sports development professional, coach educator, specialist coach of young athletes and founder of the blog Learn more about him here and connect with him on TwitterFacebookLinkedin, Anchor or via email.

Subscribe for FREE to the Coaching Young Athletes newsletter HERE.

Do you want that little bit extra? Learn about Coaching Young Athletes membership HERE.

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: