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You are in: Norfolk > Places > Places features > Former UK hammer coach visits UEA

Malcolm Fenton

Malcolm can throw more than 50 metres

Former UK hammer coach visits UEA

Malcolm Fenton, who used to train some of the best hammer throwers in the country, visited the University of East Anglia to show some of Norfolk's young talents how to get more distance.

Spinning around as fast as you can before propelling a heavy metal ball isn't something that comes easily to everyone, so the City of Norwich Athletics Club have decided to invest in expert tuition.

Former Great Britain hammer coach Malcolm Fenton has been competing in international CSAA Track & Field Championships since 1977. As well as coaching some of the best athletes in the world, he came to Norwich to give tips and advice to young throwing talent from Norfolk.

Like many sports, throwing the hammer is not all about the size of your muscles, it's more about how you throw it and when to let go.

"Throwing a hammer isn't as difficult as it looks. Like with most events, technique is king," said Malcolm.

If I had a hammer

Coverage of the Olympic Games and World Athletics Championships tend to revolve around the blue ribbon events like running and swimming.

The lack of coverage of minority sports has meant that over the years, events like hammer throwing have been overlooked and take-up has been poor.

Malcolm Fenton

Malcolm Fenton at the UEA in Norwich

"The event has seen a bit of a demise in the last few years, but fortunately in the junior ranks, the under 20's and under 23's, that has been changing," said Malcolm.

"For the first time ever at the World Junior Championships, we had both British men and women there who acquitted themselves well - it's looking good for the future," he added.

Some of Norfolk's youngsters could be stars of the future if they continue to learn from pros like Malcolm.

Jenna Connell, from Norwich, throws the hammer for the City of Norwich Athletics Club and has had an impressive start to her throwing career.

"I've been to the English Schools Championships, which was a really good experience. Next year I'm going to aim to get into the top four," said Jenna.

Distance

In the 2008 Bejing Olympic Games, the winning throw in the men's hammer competition was a massive 81.61 metres.

Fifteen-year-old Jenna may be some way off that distance, but she is no wimp when it comes to throwing.

"I can throw the hammer between 35 and 40 metres," said Jenna.

"If I carry on with the hammer throwing, I hope to be able to throw it 50 or 60 metres one day. It would be a dream to make the British squad," she added.

last updated: 20/02/2009 at 18:16
created: 20/02/2009

You are in: Norfolk > Places > Places features > Former UK hammer coach visits UEA

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