Hammer throw

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Scottish hammer throw illustration from Frank R.Stockton's book "Round-about Rambles in Lands of Fact and Fancy"
The traditional Highland games version of event
The contemporary version of the Hammer Throw
World Athletics Championships 2007 in Osaka - Victory Ceremony for Hammer Throw with winner Ivan Tsikhan (middle)
Irish born American John Flanagan in the hammer throw competition at the Summer Olympics 1908 in London

The hammer throw is one of the four throwing events in regular track and field competitions, along with the discus throw, shot put and javelin.

Men's Hammer Throw Final - 28th Summer Universiade 2015


With roots dating back to the 15th century, the contemporary version of the hammer throw is one of the oldest of Olympic Games competitions, first included at the 1900 games in Paris, France (the second Olympiad of the modern era). Its history since the late 1960s and legacy prior to inclusion in the Olympics have been dominated by European and Eastern European influence, which has had an impact on interest in the event in other parts of the world.

The hammer evolved from its early informal origins to become part of the Scottish Highland games in the late 18th century, where the original version of the event is still contested today. It is believed that, like many Highland games events, the origin of the hammer throw is tied to a prohibition by King Edward I of England against Scotsmen possessing weapons during the Wars of Scottish Independence in the late 13th and early 14th centuries.

In the absence of weapons of war, the Scots turned to alternative methods of military training. The Highland Games became a more formalized event after the Highland Clearances of the late 18th century, which were an agricultural revolution that involved forced displacement of commoners in the Scottish Highlands by the aristocracy.

While the men's hammer throw has been part of the Olympics since 1900, the International Association of Athletics Federations did not start ratifying women's marks until 1995. Women's hammer throw was first included in the Olympics at the 2000 summer games in Sydney, Australia, after having been included in the World Championships a year earlier.


The men's hammer weighs 16 pounds (7.257 kg) and measures 3 feet 11 34 inches (121.5 cm) in length and the women's hammer weighs 8.82 lb (4 kg) and 3 feet 11 inches (119.5 cm) in length.[1] Like the other throwing events, the competition is decided by who can throw the implement the farthest.

Although commonly thought of as a strength event, technical advancements in the last 30 years have evolved hammer throw competition to a point where more focus is on speed in order to gain maximum distance.

The throwing motion involves about two swings from stationary position, then three, four or very rarely five rotations of the body in circular motion using a complicated heel-toe movement of the foot. The ball moves in a circular path, gradually increasing in velocity with each turn with the high point of the ball toward the sector and the low point at the back of the circle. The thrower releases the ball from the front of the circle.

As of 2015 the men's hammer world record is held by Yuriy Sedykh, who threw 86.74 m (284 ft 634 in) at the 1986 European Athletics Championships in Stuttgart, West Germany on 30 August.

As of 2015 the world record for the women's hammer is held by Anita Włodarczyk, who threw 81.08 m (266 ft 0 in) in Władysławowo, Poland on 1 August 2015.

All-time top 25


  • Updated August 2015
Rank Mark Athlete Location Date Ref
1 86.74 m (284 ft 634 in)  Yuriy Sedykh (URS) Stuttgart 30 August 1986
2 86.04 m (282 ft 314 in)  Sergey Litvinov (URS) Dresden 3 July 1986
3 84.90 m (278 ft 612 in)  Vadim Devyatovskiy (BLR) Minsk 21 July 2005
4 84.86 m (278 ft 434 in)  Koji Murofushi (JPN) Prague 29 June 2003
5 84.62 m (277 ft 714 in)  Igor Astapkovich (BLR) Seville 6 June 1992
6 84.51 m (277 ft 3 in)  Ivan Tsikhan (BLR) Grodno 9 July 2008
7 84.48 m (277 ft 134 in)  Igor Nikulin (URS) Lausanne 12 July 1990
8 84.40 m (276 ft 1034 in)  Jüri Tamm (URS) Banská Bystrica 9 September 1984
9 84.19 m (276 ft 212 in)  Adrián Annus (HUN) Szombathely 10 August 2003
10 83.93 m (275 ft 414 in)  Paweł Fajdek (POL) Szczecin 9 August 2015 [2]
11 83.68 m (274 ft 614 in)  Tibor Gécsek (HUN) Zalaegerszeg 19 September 1998
12 83.46 m (273 ft 934 in)  Andrey Abduvaliyev (URS) Sochi 26 May 1990
13 83.43 m (273 ft 812 in)  Aleksey Zagornyi (RUS) Adler 10 February 2002
14 83.40 m (273 ft 714 in)  Ralf Haber (GDR) Athens 16 May 1988
15 83.38 m (273 ft 612 in)  Szymon Ziółkowski (POL) Edmonton 5 August 2001
16 83.30 m (273 ft 312 in)  Olli-Pekka Karjalainen (FIN) Lahti 14 July 2004
17 83.04 m (272 ft 514 in)  Heinz Weis (GER) Frankfurt 29 June 1997
18 83.00 m (272 ft 312 in)  Balázs Kiss (HUN) Saint-Denis 4 June 1998
19 82.78 m (271 ft 7 in)  Karsten Kobs (GER) Dortmund 26 June 1999
20 82.69 m (271 ft 312 in)  Krisztián Pars (HUN) Zürich 16 August 2014
21 82.64 m (271 ft 112 in)  Günther Rodehau (GDR) Dresden 3 August 1985
22= 82.62 m (271 ft 034 in)  Sergey Kirmasov (RUS) Zalaegerszeg 30 May 1998
22= 82.62 m (271 ft 034 in)  Andriy Skvaruk (UKR) Kyiv 27 April 2002
24 82.58 m (270 ft 11 in)  Primož Kozmus (SLO) Celje 2 September 2009
25 82.54 m (270 ft 912 in)  Vasiliy Sidorenko (RUS) Krasnodar 13 May 1992


  • Updated August 2015
Rank Mark Athlete Location Date Ref
1 81.08 m (266 ft 0 in)  Anita Włodarczyk (POL) Władysławowo 1 August 2015 [3]
2 79.42 m (260 ft 634 in)  Betty Heidler (GER) Halle 21 May 2011
3 78.80 m (258 ft 614 in)  Tatyana Lysenko (RUS) Moscow 16 August 2013
4 78.69 m (258 ft 2 in)  Aksana Miankova (BLR) Minsk 18 July 2012
5 77.68 m (254 ft 1014 in)  Zheng Wang (CHN) Chengdu 29 March 2014
6 77.33 m (253 ft 814 in)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN) Incheon 28 Sept 2014
7 77.26 m (253 ft 512 in)  Gulfiya Khanafeyeva (RUS) Tula 12 June 2006
8 77.13 m (253 ft 012 in)  Oksana Kondratyeva (RUS) Zhukovskiy 30 June 2013
9 76.90 m (252 ft 312 in)  Martina Hrašnová (SVK) Trnava 16 May 2009
10 76.83 m (252 ft 034 in)  Kamila Skolimowska (POL) Doha 11 May 2007
11 76.72 m (251 ft 814 in)  Mariya Bespalova (RUS) Zhukovsky 23 June 2012
12 76.66 m (251 ft 6 in)  Volha Tsander (BLR) Minsk 23 June 2006
13 76.63 m (251 ft 434 in)  Yekaterina Khoroshikh (RUS) Zhukovsky 23 June 2006
14 76.62 m (251 ft 412 in)  Yipsi Moreno (CUB) Zagreb 9 September 2008
15 76.56 m (251 ft 2 in)  Alena Matoshka (BLR) Minsk 12 June 2012
16 76.33 m (250 ft 5 in)  Darya Pchelnik (BLR) Minsk 29 June 2008
17 76.21 m (250 ft 014 in)  Yelena Konevtseva (RUS) Sochi 26 May 2007
18 76.17 m (249 ft 1034 in)  Anna Bulgakova (RUS) Moscow 24 July 2013
19 76.07 m (249 ft 634 in)  Mihaela Melinte (ROU) Rüdlingen 29 August 1999
20 76.05 m (249 ft 6 in)  Kathrin Klaas (GER) London 10 August 2012
21= 75.73 m (248 ft 514 in)  Amanda Bingson (USA) Des Moines 22 June 2013
21= 75.73 m (248 ft 514 in)  Sultana Frizell (CAN) Tucson 22 May 2014
23 75.68 m (248 ft 312 in)  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS) Tula 4 June 2000
24 75.09 m (246 ft 414 in)  Yelena Rigert (RUS) Moscow 15 July 2013
25 75.08 m (246 ft 334 in)  Ivana Brkljačić (CRO) Warsaw 17 June 2007

Olympic medalists


Games Gold Silver Bronze
1900 Paris
 John Flanagan (USA)  Truxtun Hare (USA)  Josiah McCracken (USA)
1904 St. Louis
 John Flanagan (USA)  John DeWitt (USA)  Ralph Rose (USA)
1908 London
 John Flanagan (USA)  Matt McGrath (USA)  Con Walsh (CAN)
1912 Stockholm
 Matt McGrath (USA)  Duncan Gillis (CAN)  Clarence Childs (USA)
1920 Antwerp
 Patrick Ryan (USA)  Carl Johan Lind (SWE)  Basil Bennett (USA)
1924 Paris
 Fred Tootell (USA)  Matt McGrath (USA)  Malcolm Nokes (GBR)
1928 Amsterdam
 Pat O'Callaghan (IRL)  Ossian Skiöld (SWE)  Edmund Black (USA)
1932 Los Angeles
 Pat O'Callaghan (IRL)  Ville Pörhölä (FIN)  Peter Zaremba (USA)
1936 Berlin
 Karl Hein (GER)  Erwin Blask (GER)  Fred Warngård (SWE)
1948 London
 Imre Németh (HUN)  Ivan Gubijan (YUG)  Robert Bennett (USA)
1952 Helsinki
 József Csermák (HUN)  Karl Storch (GER)  Imre Németh (HUN)
1956 Melbourne
 Hal Connolly (USA)  Mikhail Krivonosov (URS)  Anatoliy Samotsvetov (URS)
1960 Rome
 Vasily Rudenkov (URS)  Gyula Zsivótzky (HUN)  Tadeusz Rut (POL)
1964 Tokyo
 Romuald Klim (URS)  Gyula Zsivótzky (HUN)  Uwe Beyer (EUA)
1968 Mexico City
 Gyula Zsivótzky (HUN)  Romuald Klim (URS)  Lázár Lovász (HUN)
1972 Munich
 Anatoliy Bondarchuk (URS)  Jochen Sachse (GDR)  Vasiliy Khmelevskiy (URS)
1976 Montreal
 Yuriy Sedykh (URS)  Aleksey Spiridonov (URS)  Anatoliy Bondarchuk (URS)
1980 Moscow
 Yuriy Sedykh (URS)  Sergey Litvinov (URS)  Jüri Tamm (URS)
1984 Los Angeles
 Juha Tiainen (FIN)  Karl-Hans Riehm (FRG)  Klaus Ploghaus (FRG)
1988 Seoul
 Sergey Litvinov (URS)  Yuriy Sedykh (URS)  Jüri Tamm (URS)
1992 Barcelona
 Andrey Abduvaliyev (EUN)  Igor Astapkovich (EUN)  Igor Nikulin (EUN)
1996 Atlanta
 Balázs Kiss (HUN)  Lance Deal (USA)  Oleksandr Krykun (UKR)
2000 Sydney
 Szymon Ziółkowski (POL)  Nicola Vizzoni (ITA)  Igor Astapkovich (BLR)
2004 Athens
 Koji Murofushi (JPN) Not awarded[4]  Eşref Apak (TUR)
2008 Beijing
 Primož Kozmus (SLO)  Vadim Devyatovskiy (BLR)[5]  Ivan Tsikhan (BLR)[5]
2012 London
 Krisztián Pars (HUN)  Primož Kozmus (SLO)  Koji Murofushi (JPN)


Games Gold Silver Bronze
2000 Sydney
 Kamila Skolimowska (POL)  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Kirsten Münchow (GER)
2004 Athens
 Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Yunaika Crawford (CUB)
2008 Beijing
 Aksana Miankova (BLR)  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN)
2012 London
 Tatyana Lysenko (RUS)  Anita Włodarczyk (POL)  Betty Heidler (GER)

World Championships medalists


Games Gold Silver Bronze
1983 Helsinki  Sergey Litvinov (URS)  Yuriy Sedykh (URS)  Zdzisław Kwaśny (POL)
1987 Rome  Sergey Litvinov (URS)  Jüri Tamm (URS)  Ralf Haber (GDR)
1991 Tokyo  Yuriy Sedykh (URS)  Igor Astapkovich (URS)  Heinz Weis (GER)
1993 Stuttgart  Andrey Abduvaliyev (TJK)  Igor Astapkovich (BLR)  Tibor Gécsek (HUN)
1995 Gothenburg  Andrey Abduvaliyev (TJK)  Igor Astapkovich (BLR)  Tibor Gécsek (HUN)
1997 Athens  Heinz Weis (GER)  Andriy Skvaruk (UKR)  Vasiliy Sidorenko (RUS)
1999 Seville  Karsten Kobs (GER)  Zsolt Németh (HUN)  Vladislav Piskunov (UKR)
2001 Edmonton  Szymon Ziółkowski (POL)  Koji Murofushi (JPN)  Ilya Konovalov (RUS)
2003 Saint-Denis  Ivan Tsikhan (BLR)  Adrián Annus (HUN)  Koji Murofushi (JPN)
2005 Helsinki  Szymon Ziółkowski (POL)  Markus Esser (GER)  Olli-Pekka Karjalainen (FIN)
2007 Osaka  Ivan Tsikhan (BLR)  Primož Kozmus (SLO)  Libor Charfreitag (SVK)
2009 Berlin  Primož Kozmus (SLO)  Szymon Ziółkowski (POL)  Aleksey Zagornyi (RUS)
2011 Daegu  Koji Murofushi (JPN)  Krisztián Pars (HUN)  Primož Kozmus (SLO)
2013 Moscow  Paweł Fajdek (POL)  Krisztián Pars (HUN)  Lukáš Melich (CZE)
2015 Beijing  Paweł Fajdek (POL)  Dilshod Nazarov (TJK)  Wojciech Nowicki (POL)


Games Gold Silver Bronze
1999 Seville  Mihaela Melinte (ROU)  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Lisa Misipeka (ASA)
2001 Edmonton  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Bronwyn Eagles (AUS)
2003 Saint-Denis  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Manuela Montebrun (FRA)
2005 Helsinki  Olga Kuzenkova (RUS)  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Tatyana Lysenko (RUS)
2007 Osaka  Betty Heidler (GER)  Yipsi Moreno (CUB)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN)
2009 Berlin  Anita Włodarczyk (POL)  Betty Heidler (GER)  Martina Hrašnová (SVK)
2011 Daegu  Tatyana Lysenko (RUS)  Betty Heidler (GER)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN)
2013 Moscow  Tatyana Lysenko (RUS)  Anita Wlodarczyk (POL)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN)
2015 Beijing  Anita Wlodarczyk (POL)  Zhang Wenxiu (CHN)  Alexandra Tavernier (FRA)

Season's bests

Notes and references

  1. "Hammer Throw - Introduction". IAAF. Retrieved 12 December 2011.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Phil Minshull (9 August 2015). "Fajdek throws 83.93m in Szczecin". IAAF. Retrieved 10 August 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Jon Mulkeen (1 August 2015). "Wlodarczyk smashes hammer world record with 81.08m in Cetniewo". IAAF. Retrieved 2 August 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 2004 Olympic Hammer Throw Medalists. Olympic.org. Retrieved on 2014-04-19.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Engeler, Elaine (June 10, 2010). "CAS Reinstates Medals for Hammer Throwers". Yahoo! Sports. Associated Press. Retrieved 2010-06-15.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links