News & Updates

14 January 2022 • High Performance

Athletics NZ hosts successful Throws Camp

The athletes in action at the Athletics NZ Throws Camp. (Credit: Kim Mickle).

An Athletics NZ Throws Camp in Christchurch focused on ‘high performance and what it takes to be an elite thrower’ has been hailed a big success by Athletics NZ Throws Coach and camp leader Kim Mickle. 

The three-day camp (9-11 Jan) – which was strategically placed between the Lovelock Classic in Timaru and Yvette Williams Memorial meet in Dunedin to offer competitive opportunities for those attending the camp – attracted 52 high performance and development throwers. 

These included double Olympic shot put bronze medallist Tom Walsh, Paralympic javelin champion Holly Robinson, Oceania women’s hammer record-holder Lauren Bruce and Paralympic shot put ace Ben Tuimaseve as well as many Performance Development Squad athletes. 

“We thought it would be really cool to invite the development athletes as well as the high performance athletes, so the younger athletes could see what it really takes to be a HP thrower. We had athletes aged from 16 to their mid-30s and you could see the younger ones were fizzing when they were watching the likes of Lauren and Tom train.” 

The packed three-day schedule which was held at Nga Puni Wai and the HPSNZ Apollo Projects Centre included a daily coaching clinic, which offered the chance for athletes to throw with Athletics NZ coaches Dale Stevenson, Raylene Bates, John Eden, Tim Driesen, Kirsten Hellier and Hayden Hall and Kim, who were all ready to share their expertise. Other leading throws coaches – Shaka Sola and Mike Schofield – also helped out at the camp. 

The throwers were also given nutritional advice – and were the chance to make a smoothie – and experienced a pilates class  

All attendees at the camp also spent an hour with Tim and Kirsten learning about the importance of gym testing and were later put through their paces with three hours of testing. 

“It was unreal watching all the athletes go for glory in the gym,” says Kim. “The camp was full noise for all three days.” 

Kim intends for another Athletics NZ camp to take place next year but reflects on the 2022 edition as a big success. 

“It is great to get all the throwers together for the same purpose,” she adds. “The athletes all see each other at comps but often don’t get the chance to spend time together training. 

“I think what the camp did is it offered a great insight into what it takes to become a great thrower.  It was great for the coaches to share their knowledge while because the athletes all trained together this also enhanced the intensity and competitiveness.”