Shot put and discus are track and field events at the middle school, high school, collegiate, professional and Olympic levels. Most shot putters and discus throwers are relatively strong and sturdily built. Their workouts include various weightlifting exercises as well as specific drills that help enhance their skills.
Because of the twisting and thrusting movements involved in both sports, shot put and discus workouts should start by focusing on stretching and flexibility exercises. Without proper stretching and warmup exercises, the athlete can easily pull a muscle or get injured. Stretching the arms, shoulders, hamstrings and groin muscles, and twisting and touching the toes to stretch abdominal and back muscles should be performed.
Shot put and discus throwers need to have strong legs as the distance of their throw is based in part upon how much thrust they get with their legs. Performing squats can help build strong legs. Squats should be performed twice per week using moderate to heavy free weights on a squat rack. Leg presses can also help build strong leg muscles. The athletes should also work their hamstrings with leg curls or stiff-legged deadlifts.
Both shot put and discus athletes use their chest, shoulders and triceps when throwing. Workouts should include moderate and heavy bench presses. The bench press can help a person build the necessary strength in her chest, shoulders and triceps for the rigors of either sport. The military press and various triceps exercises such as overhead extensions and pushdowns can also help build shoulder and arm strength.
Shot put and discus workouts focus on different movements within an athlete's throw. People who compete in the shot put can practice throwing a six-pound medicine ball against the wall and catching it to add strength and distance to their throws, according to bodybuilding.com. Both throwers can twist from side to side with the medicine ball. Another workout drill entails holding the medicine ball overhead and bending to the right and left.
Shot put and discus workouts should also include sprinting and running drills. Sprints can help the athlete enhance the thrusting movements in their legs. Sprints and running can also help build endurance, which is required for getting through long practice sessions and track meets.