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Message started by Thearos on Sep 2nd, 2011 at 9:08pm

Title: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 2nd, 2011 at 9:08pm
The last few weeks, I went slinging at a cliff face. Midday sun, so no passerby; also overexposed film. I think I got better by the end.

The target: a very big graffito, the size of a couch.
The sling: braided and woven pouch.
http://slinging.org/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1311625315/16#16


Distances and hits:

15 m (?), all the time.
20 m (?), not very often, say between 15 and 30 % of the time. Problems with shots pulling severely to the right.

Technique: helicopter, with problematic release and follow-through.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4-gKuPwlrI

Comments and snark welcome.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by David Morningstar on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 4:12am
I would suggest keeping your elbow further back behind your head, you are giving up a lot of throw length by having your arm too much beside you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wY-EHvtjhAY

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by jauke.H on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 4:54am
And try to put more force in your arm when you release it.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 4:57am
Thanks, Jauke-- too much slack in the release, as if I were tossing the stone. It doesn't *feel that way, only shows on the vid.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Morphy on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 10:37am
I don't use this style so I'm not the best person to answer this. But I do agree with both of the above answers. Not from a specific knowledge of the helicopter but just from a knowledge of how the sling works in general. Your losing a ton of power because your not getting your whole body into it and it seems like your pulling into the throw late so your almost guiding the sling towards the target rather than the usual hard and smooth pull into a throw.  Just my 2 cents.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 11:10am
Thanks !

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 12:01pm
The same inability to rein in the slack visible in an older vid

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PY_Q3R_LeyY

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Eoraptor on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 2:39pm

Thearos wrote on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 12:01pm:
The same inability to rein in the slack visible in an older vid

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PY_Q3R_LeyY

Perhaps a shorter sling would help?  :-?  

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Rat Man on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 3:26pm
 It seemed to me like your follow through was a little off balance.  I think you could be more accurate if you'd smooth that out  or do like Jaegoor and eliminate the step through; just twist your hips instead.  I changed from stepping through to just hip twisting and I didn't notice any change in power.  I just got more accurate.  

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 4:20pm
Thanks, very useful. Yes, I guess it's more like throwing at the target, and I don't really think about finish. I do sometimes hit the target dead centre, which is nice.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Bill Skinner on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 6:49pm
I will agree with Rat Man, it looks like you are off balance when you throw.  You need to smooth out your release and avoid lunging into the throw.  Bear in mind that you have been slinging for a lot longer than me, I am not an expert by any means.  Bill

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 3rd, 2011 at 7:56pm
Avoid lunging-- sounds good, much appreciated !

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Dan on Sep 5th, 2011 at 8:41am
I am with Bill and the others as far as your foot work and I would also suggest putting a little more arm in it as well. Get out there and keep slinging, and if you listen to the guys here you'll definitely get more comfortable and better in no time.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Aussie on Sep 6th, 2011 at 1:01am
Comparing your action to Jaegoor's; a few points that struck me:

1. He keeps his feet very firmly planted. The front doesn't move at all and the rear has only heel lift. Balance is critical.

2. He does the initial helicopter rotations very well back, like the picture on the logo; not overhead. Starting too far forward forces you into a "forward topple" on release.

3. When he's ready to discharge he rotates his whole body around its axis which then brings his arm forward and discharges with a very pronounced downward sweep. Note where his arm finishes, quite low down near his left hip. Even though the initial rotations are approximately horizontal the final thrust definitely is not. You tend to sweep through to the left in essentially the same plane as the initial rotations.

4. I don't know what weight stones you use but he prefers heavy stones at 200+ grams. I've been experimenting a little with heavy projectiles (a lacrosse ball, still lighter than 200g) and the velocity retention is phenomenal. Even his very relaxed looking style gives a considerably faster velocity than you would expect. You may want to experiment with increasing the weight of your projectiles.

BTW this is a case of do what I say not do what I do. I mainly sling tennis balls which are very light. I accept they are less than ideal but my overiding consideration is public safety so performance suffers a bit.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 6th, 2011 at 9:18am
Thanks, Aussie. Yours were the comments I was most looking forward to. The ammo used here is "hand-filling stones". No idea of weight, but pretty chunky stuff.

I wish I;d had your comments while earlier ! I didn't have the right cable, so couldn't upload the film. The funny thing is that I've had correspondence with Jaegoor on technique, and he made the point about not stepping forward, and I was convinced I was in fact keeping this to a minimum !

The downwards slash favoured by Jaegoor is very nice. I'm still trying to master horizontal release timing, which should be possible, even at my age.

The forward topple comes from the mistaken belief that this is, in effect, orienting the body towards the target-- the result is somehow to fall out of synch with rotation power-- hence this limp lobbing movement.

When all's said and done, I must have slung maybe 700-900 shots, good heavy stones (not well shaped, alas)-- and thoroughly enjoyed each one of them flying hard and breaking against a cliff face.  

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Jaegoor on Sep 6th, 2011 at 11:21am
It badly does not look. The way then they commit is right.
Aussi has already said some points.
If I see it right, they shoot a sort of Sidehand.
They can put no rotor with this method well.
If they try it rather from an Overhand.
Thus a linear shot might not be difficult for them.


Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 6th, 2011 at 11:42am
Thank you, Jaegoor ! Much appreciated. I tried to follow the very useful advice you gave me a year ago-- or thought I was doing so ! So you say I should try rotor + overhand, which is what you show in your recent video.

May I recommend to my fellow slingers the idea of putting themselves on video, for other slingers to see ? It's like a clinic for advice. You can wear a hood if you don't want your friends to see you.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 6th, 2011 at 11:49am
I also add that the graffito I was slinging at was mainly white, so hits produced white puffs off the cliff. Very satisfying.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Mauro Fiorentini on Sep 6th, 2011 at 1:23pm

Thearos wrote on Sep 6th, 2011 at 11:42am:
May I recommend to my fellow slingers the idea of putting themselves on video, for other slingers to see ? It's like a clinic for advice. You can wear a hood if you don't want your friends to see you.


I've seen your video only today, therefore I congratulate with you! Nice shoots, mine are light years behind!  :)

The idea of making videos is great, I'd love to try, I'm going to ask a close friend of mine if she's willing to spare some of her free time filming me  :)
Greetings,
Mauro.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Morphy on Sep 6th, 2011 at 1:27pm

Thearos wrote on Sep 6th, 2011 at 11:42am:
May I recommend to my fellow slingers the idea of putting themselves on video, for other slingers to see ? It's like a clinic for advice. You can wear a hood if you don't want your friends to see you.


I agree Thearos. You never know when some random thing you say or do will be the one tip someone needs at that moment.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Yurek on Sep 6th, 2011 at 1:34pm
Thearos,

My two cents. At first glance it is visible that there is a problem with efficient driving/pulling of the sling. It looks a bit like if you chased your sling. Your intense action of the body doesn't give an expected power of the throw. So in this case it really seems to be redundant - such amount of the power you gets you may get with much lower cost.

I think the initial stance and rotations are correct. The problem is in the final stroke. It seems that you start the body rotation to late - that should be started when the sling is over your head. Besides your forearm/palm doesn't trace a fluent spiral-like trajectory - the move is too flat. It looks like the last phase of the throw does almost all job, thus the action of the whole body is wasted.

Summarizing, to late the start of the stroke and not optimal the movement of the forearm - not enough of the driving/pulling force. My advice is to spend some time practicing slowly to feel the tension of the cords during the whole stroke. The initial rotations give the initial tension before the stroke. That one should be just bigger and bigger until the release.

Maybe the movie will help you a bit. The technique is similar to yours. In this case the dynamic body action gives a vibrant shot, so the transfer of the energy is not so bad.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qs-ZfTTNXa4



Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 6th, 2011 at 5:56pm
I know and like that vid very much. In any case, I'm back home now, and have no easy access to a place where I can easily sling 100 nice heavy stones at distances btw. 0 and 50 m without being bothered.

Yurek, I agree with what you say about the final stroke-- will try starting it earlier. The intense body action is what I do in the belief that it helps propel the stone-- but of course, the work is done by careful sling trajectory and geometry. Not so easy !

All this, I think, shows that I have arrived to the limits of "instinctive" slinging. I sling as it feels right, and when I shoot I can hit things and develops soe power-- but clearly not optimally. Filming and criticism by other slingers, at this point, is crucial for improvement. This is in favour of the sporting approach favoured by Jaegoor and others, rather than the cheerful "just sling away" school which I have espoused up to now on this forum.


Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Aussie on Sep 6th, 2011 at 6:23pm
Of course there's nothing wrong with the "cheerful just sling away" approach. None of us sling because we have to, only because we want to. So having fun is the only criterium we have to satisfy.

I am quite impressed by Jaegoor's consistent methodical approach to slinging but I also enjoy the explosiveness of a good Fig.8 with lighter ammo and a good initial step, even if my shoulder suffers for it afterward. My technique may not meet Balearic competition rules but from what I've seen on video I wouldn't be disgraced if I was ever to compete with them.

Anyway, if you're having fun and getting those stones to go where you want them to, then that's what I call success!

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 6th, 2011 at 7:32pm
We do seem to have developed a particular notion, that of sling lag, chasing the sling-- which I'm not alone in doing, I think. yet another thing to think about while slinging !

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Aussie on Sep 7th, 2011 at 1:33am
Don't know if you've seen this but here's a good vid of a very "informal" unstructured style helicopter throw. The slinger not only moves his front foot but walks forward toward the target and steps through the shot as well. Not only that but his preliminary rotations start all over the place, not in a nice even plane over his head; all very naughty. Yet his shot is very effective, accurate and enough power to punch a hole in the sheet steel. Through practise he's developed the feel to know where the pouch is and whre the projectile will go when it's released.

However, notice how the final thrust is not in the same plane but in an overhead sweep with beautiful body and shoulder rotation as well as a very pronounced forward thrust with the elbow, pretty well identical to the final thrust of a good old Fig.8. I'll bet he's not throwing 200 gram stones either, much lighter.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xnvyTFtzdwY

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Rat Man on Sep 7th, 2011 at 7:01am
It takes a bit of courage and confidence to put yourself out there and say "OK, guys, pick me apart."  I think doing something like this could help almost anyone.  I'll have to get someone to video me for this purpose.  

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 7th, 2011 at 7:25am
Yeah-- it's only once I realized "hmm I'm actually slinging a bit better" that I thought to vid myself. Still need a lot of work !

I think either vid, or slinging with someone who observes you and points things out. As I wrote, when I sling I'm trying to hit the target, and I notice only after the shot that I've stepped forward (sometime almost like a petanque player), as I mutter "go" to the stone and grit my teeth when I miss. As soon as i saw the vid on my cmputer screen I realized something was very wrong with the release.

When I slung some of the shots felt good, some of them felt too weak-- but I couldn't realize why sometimes the shot flew well at 50 m, and sometimes went limp at 20m. I now know it's this problem of picking up the slack (Scoteeball slings fig-8 to practice reining in the slack in his golfing).

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Yurek on Sep 7th, 2011 at 8:36am

Thearos wrote on Sep 6th, 2011 at 7:32pm:
We do seem to have developed a particular notion, that of sling lag, chasing the sling-- which I'm not alone in doing, I think. yet another thing to think about while slinging !


Thearos,

Looks like too much criticism have been dropped on your head from every where :)
It really can be frustrating and take away all joy of slinging. Forgive me if I sounded too critically or condescendingly. English isn't my language so my post are often laconic and raw.

You are right that you not alone in doing the mentioned things, I am sure most slingers including me.  

I know that too many advices and samples can be confusing, so it is not worth to think abut it too much (it doesn't mean that they are all worthless). Slinging as you said is instinctive. Thinking and tips often can help to correct some mistakes indeed but nuances are matter of timing and instinct. In my opinion too analytical approach isn't the best way.

I think the "cheerful just sling away" approach is just the best way to understand/feel efficient throws. When your stones fly farer and farer without an additional effort you are closer and closer to get understanding/feeling how the sling and body should work. Once you get it, you will try to use the feeling, no matter what technique, sling, stone you use or whether you sling for distance or accuracy.

Don't think too much about different steps and other similar details. They can help or obstruct no doubts, but they are subsidiary. Do just what you feel as comfortable natural or essential in a given situation.

I think you know it all. Your technique isn't bad at all but some nuances need to be corrected a bit to make that more efficient.

I know the feeling of my perfect shot (no matter if for accuracy or distance), but my problem is that I can get it way too rarely and I still chase it :D




Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Morphy on Sep 7th, 2011 at 9:56am
Yurek, I think nailed it.

So long as your having fun you will keep practicing. When your hobby becomes work you will look elsewhere.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 7th, 2011 at 1:00pm
I don't thik i got any criticism at all, just help.

Will try not to move my feet so much, put rotor further back, and start the throw a bit earlier. Would not have thought of it if I hadn't got so much help.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Rat Man on Sep 7th, 2011 at 2:18pm
I don't think that anyone who offered you a suggestion feels that  you're a poor slinger.  You asked for constructive criticism and you got it.  It's not like we're saying "I'm better than you."    We're all in the same boat; trying to improve while keeping the fun aspect of it.  The next time it could very well be you giving me a suggestion.  
   And I agree with Morphy.  That was very well put, Yurek.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by David Morningstar on Sep 7th, 2011 at 2:24pm
The key things I have found teaching sling classes to groups (four groups so far) are:

Get your hand back, as far back as you can. Those last twelve inches or so can make the difference between a mild delivery and a proper whipping accelerating shot. Before you throw, think 'Back!'

Rotate with the wrist only, like stirring a cup of tea. It needs hardly any effort and only enough speed to keep the sling horizontal. Any more than that gives you less time and pulls your hand around unnecessarily. If you rotate with the whole forearm, from the elbow, then your hand will creep forward and you will lose power.

Start your throw as the sling crosses in front of you. Dont wait for it swing behind you so you have something to 'throw against', this is too late and will only give you a mild delivery. You want your hand to be moving while the sling is 'blind' on the backswing, you will not feel any reaction from the sling at first. You want to get a sudden 'kick in the pouch', a  'surprised' reaction from the sling that yanks back against your throw. This is where the energy transfer happens and the pouch accelerates to high velocity in a fraction of a second.    

Start with your weight on your back foot, with that foot pointing 90 degrees away from the line of aim. This will set up your body sideways on to the target with your throwing shoulder as far back as possible. When you throw, let your weight flow forward onto your front foot, come up of the toe of your back foot a little but you dont need to do more than that for a Helicopter.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 7th, 2011 at 3:48pm
Thank you. This is getting elaborate.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 7th, 2011 at 8:11pm
I think one of the reasons I start the throw wrong / too late is that (living in a town) I don't have much occasion for continuous slinging, so a lot of what I do is dry-firing. Aussie pointed out to me a long time ago that dry firing is good for one thing (practising crisp release-- and I need that to, maybe 2% of my shots fouled on release cord), but actually gives bad habits as for sling placement.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 7th, 2011 at 8:25pm
From Morningstar's advice, I remember this:

do not go "and a one- and a two- and a three- and a throw",

but

"and a one- and a two- and a three-WHANG"



Thanks everyone. Next time I'm going slinging I'm guaranteed to hit myself in the head.

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Aussie on Sep 8th, 2011 at 6:01am

Thearos wrote on Sep 7th, 2011 at 8:11pm:
I think one of the reasons I start the throw wrong / too late is that (living in a town) I don't have much occasion for continuous slinging, so a lot of what I do is dry-firing. Aussie pointed out to me a long time ago that dry firing is good for one thing (practising crisp release-- and I need that to, maybe 2% of my shots fouled on release cord), but actually gives bad habits as for sling placement.


I sling tennis balls for the very same reason ie. living in a city. I have never had anyone ever complain when I sling in public sports parks (not gardens) and I sling a lot! TB's are relatively poor sling ammo because they're a bit light and don't go far. But in public places that can be an advantage and you don't have to go too far to retrieve them.

Only too happy to send you one or more of my slings which are optimised for slinging tennis balls

Title: Re: Slinging in the sun
Post by Thearos on Sep 8th, 2011 at 6:58am
Thanks, PM sent

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