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Parry O'Brien quote from 1959

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  • Parry O'Brien quote from 1959

    I found this quote from Perry O'Brien in the December 1959 T&FN:
    Within the confines of a seven foot circle nobody, no matter how big, can put the shot more than 67 feet. The circle limits the operating area, and no matter how huge a man may be or how strong, as he gets bigger his operating area becomes smaller. So, with the current physical standards it's my belief that 67 feet is the limit, and I'm aiming for that mark.
    ‚Äč

  • #2
    And yet it was only five years later that Dallas Long bettered 67'! Interesting quote, noone.

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    • #3
      I think the key thing is "..with current physical standards..". The physical standards improved, so did the distance, including O'Brien's!

      Kinda like the much misrepresented quote by Thomas Watson at IBM who supposedly said, " there's only a world market for maybe 5 computers."

      But of course, that's not what he actually said. He was referring to to IBM's sales expectations for a certain model of computer before they went out to market where it got orders for 20 or so. I think the lease cost was something in the order of USD 250k annually.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by El Toro View Post
        I think the key thing is "..with current physical standards..". The physical standards improved, so did the distance, including O'Brien's!
        I believe that "current physical standards" referred to the dimension of the circle and the weight of the implement.
        Last edited by noone; 10-17-2021, 08:39 PM.

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        • #5
          I saw a YouTube interview with Ryan Crouser who felt that the limit was 24m which I make nearly 79 feet. Obviously that is with a different technique to O'Brien but many 'shifters' have thrown much further than 70 feet.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Trickstat View Post
            I saw a YouTube interview with Ryan Crouser who felt that the limit was 24m
            And his prediction will fall as hard as O'Brien's did.

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            • #7
              Reminds of Brutus Hamilton predicting that a 4-minute mile was beyond reach, then a generation later coaching Don Bowden to the first American sub four.

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              • #8
                re O'Brien's 1959 comment, it was the very next year when Neider early in the season blasted the record out to a new ground 65-7, then added another 3 inches just prior to the OG. And SI had a big article about " OBrien's Flaw" and " Neider's Secret, " showing how Neider rolled the shot up his hand rather than gripping it prior to release. Anyone else remember that article ?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dukehjsteve View Post
                  Anyone else remember that [1960 SI !!] article ?
                  I can't remember what I had for breakfast . . .

                  As for where the shot is - at release, it's out on the fingers, and if you've timed the chain-of-momentum correctly, the fingers-snap can add FEET.
                  Last edited by Atticus; 10-17-2021, 07:09 PM.

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                  • #10
                    I heard a quote recently (can't recall the source) saying "I didn't want to try the shot put, afraid I'd break my toes..."

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jc203 View Post
                      I heard a quote recently (can't recall the source) saying "I didn't want to try the shot put, afraid I'd break my toes..."
                      My (by far) most bittersweet track athlete story is about an obese boy I had that wasn't good at anything. He was very slow, so any track race or jump was out of the question. So I steered him to the Shot Put. He'd get three throws and he'd be happy that he was on the team (track is no-cut). At his first meet, he dropped it in the circle of his first two tries and hit the toe-board with the shot on his third. He became the Team Manager and was happy with that.
                      At the District Championship, he came over to my best boy pole vaulter, who was struggling with his technique that day. The boy told the PVer what he 'should do' on the next jump (completely wrong) and I lost my patience and was about to tell him to leave the area, when the PVer saw my frustration and put his hand up, walked over to the boy and said, 'Thanks, Andrew, I'll try my best."
                      He scraped over on his third try and high-fived the other boy, and I have never been prouder of anyone (PVer) in my life. I have remembered that moment vividly. I have tried to be more patient with people like that ever since.

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                      • #12
                        VICTORY AT HIS FINGERTIPS


                        Shotputter Bill Nieder, who won the U.S.'s first track and field gold medal in Rome and defeated his waspish archrival Parry O'Brien in the process, disclosed to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED Artist Robert Riger the well-kept secret that contributed to the victory.

                        "I have a strong rotation," he says of the unusually loose, dervishlike whirl that brings him to A the point where he releases the 16-pound ball. "But my secret is that throughout the rotation I carry the shot in the palm of my hand, not on the fingers as O'Brien and others do. This lets me move my arm quicker and puts no strain on the hand. Then, at the last instant, I let the shot roll off the palm and onto the fingers where I give it a final finger snap that shoots it out in a low trajectory. Why, if Dave Davis knew this he could throw it out of the park. That's the whole story."

                        Riger learned one other Nieder secret. The bandage he wears on his right hand serves no purpose, Nieder confessed. He put it on a year ago after an injury and has worn it in competition since, though the hand healed long ago. Why? "It helps me up here," he said, pointing to his head.
                        42075---033---image.jpg

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                        • #13
                          Nieder was not correct about the palm-rolling, but if he thought it worked, more power to him.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Atticus View Post
                            Nieder was not correct about the palm-rolling, but if he thought it worked, more power to him.
                            https://irarabois.com/stories-that-f...ty-of-what-is/

                            The "Donald Lawrence" referred to by Milton Erickson is, of course, Dallas Long. Reminds me of Billy Mills talking about programming himself to believe that he could win the gold.

                            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfLLNksZmoY

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Peter Michaelson View Post
                              Reminds me of Billy Mills talking about programming himself to believe that he could win the gold.
                              I used to routinely bald-face-lie to my athletes in practice about what they had just run the hurdles in or jumped. It was much easier to do in a meet, what they thought they had already done in practice. In full run-up approaches, I never let them see what the HJ or PV bar was set at, as it tended to intimidate them, but once they made it, it broke the mental barrier.

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