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How important is it for your reach back to come from your shoulder? I've been playing on and off for years, but I've always pulled from my side at the bottom of my rib cage. I've tried coming from my shoulder with many mixed results. Should I change and spend more time from the shoulder or is it too late to teach an old dog new tricks?

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I know a few people who throw from under the arm, and some very successfully but by having your opposite arm extended out, it slows your rotation and decreases power(distance) so you have to turn harder to get the rotation that would come with less effort if you had the left arm tucked to your side. Think of a ice skater turning on a toe with their arms out vs the speed of rotation they get with arms down.
Good analogy Bill. That's the best way to put it honestly.
Check out the slow motion videos on my profile. Look how far back those guys push the disc before bringing it forward.

Based on that, I'm going to have to say reach back is SUPER important.
after maxing out around 300-330' with my wraiths.....I watched an old "disc golf live" segment with Mike Raley (discraft pro) at brown park showing the basics of a backhand throw......after realizing I wasn't reaching back high and far (ie. not a good enough shoulder turn) and pulling it straight across my chest (as if on a board) I was able to create much more snap with less effort....now I can throw much further with less effort!!!! good form means more predictable results......I would say take the time to find a local pro to critique your form and don't be afraid to change.....usually this will provide some short-term setbacks during the learning phase but eventually you'll be rewarded!!
Great....Now I'm gonna have to learn how to throw all over again!. Actually there's a lot of great knowledge out there. I don't know if I'll be able to change, but I'm gonna give it a shot.
Thank you for all the good info. Now it's time to practice...when I can find time. My 5 year old daughter is home from school for two weeks and it's too cold to take her with me.
A good reach-back will turn the shoulders & is really a good way to get a nice pull through. Weather your pulling across low (Ken Climo) or high (Nate Doss) should not be a real concern. Try new things & most times you pick up new tricks to get a little more D.
bill says it pretty well.
I was always told that the reach back is very important. The way I was taught was when you are reaching back, it should look like you are about to give your disc to someone standing behind you. That would more or less be the limit, I guess it gives you the most time and room to accelerate the disc.
chad should post a clip of his backhand throw, it would probably answer your questions perfectly. he throws about 300' with no run up which ain't bad. his form is fluid and most of his power seems to come from reaching back from his shoulder. he gets good consistency too by using the big "pull" from the shoulder.

Chad Curtis said:
I learned how to throw backhand after about 8 years of forehand-only golf. I can't throw it all that far backhand but I can throw it low and straight. I learned my backhand from a standing position and reaching back added some distance. I reach back as far as I can and I keep the disc up at shoulder height. This forces me to come through in a flat or slightly downward motion. A good extension on the pull back and a good follow through helped me.
I have a buddy that I throw with who does that and has almost no consistency, he also curls his arm around the disc and it appears that he throws it as hard as he can. It is painful to watch and you can guarantee where the disc is going when you're standing behind him when he releases.

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