Max the CFA Basket-Ball Throw?

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by birdwatcher4125, Jul 26, 2018.

  1. birdwatcher4125

    birdwatcher4125 Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    21
    Does anyone know how common it is for a candidate to MAX (102') the CFA Basket-Ball Throw?

    My DS is making great progress toward maxing out all of the other five CFA events, but the B-Ball throw is making the slowest progress. When he first started his CFA workout routine (more than three months ago) he was throwing high 50s to low 60s, now he's throwing high 70s to low 80s. I know the averages are somewhere between 65'-70', but he's hoping to squeeze as many points as possible out of the CFA (hoping for an 800). He's been stuck at these throwing numbers for weeks and can't seem to gain anymore ground.

    Does anyone have any advice?

    Thanks.
     
  2. THParent

    THParent Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    1,712
    Last year, a candidate posted here that he did the Max of 102'-0". I didn't believe it then, and I still don't believe it.
    Oh, I think it's possible, but not something 99% of the candidates out there can even get close to.
    My DS threw the basketball 62'-0" and passed the CFA, so there you go. I tried it several times and had a "PR" of 65'-0". :)

    The CFA is just one of the three qualifications (Academic, Medical, Physical). You either pass, or you don't.
    I would urge you not to get hung up on the BB throw, but there are YouTube videos describing the best form for several elements of the CFA (BB Throw, Shuttle Run, Push Ups, Pull Ups).

    The much better thing to do is to practice the entire six parts of the CFA in the time frame allotted.
    It is a workout, in itself.
     
  3. Cdkd

    Cdkd Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2017
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    20
    You don't need to max out on ball throw. My DS got 65-70 and now is NC. Everything else also needs to be above average and the final 1 mile run is very important.
     
  4. time2

    time2 10-Year Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Messages:
    1,629
    Likes Received:
    647
    Lots of older threads about the CFA on here where this has been discussed. The basketball throw is partly about technique so look for various posted videos that demonstrate ways to make improvement.
     
  5. MidwestDad

    MidwestDad Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2017
    Messages:
    487
    Likes Received:
    318
    DS was varsity QB and had a pretty fair arm for an average size male; I couldn't catch his passes after 8th grade without wearing gloves to avoid bruised hands. He did fine on CFA but didn't dominate bball throw; to be fair he didn't practice it at all as far as I know.

    I think having a huge wingspan may be the biggest advantage just due to leverage and ball speed. Average arm length and huge upper body strength just might not develop the ball ballistics you need to max.

    Don't sweat it if you are above avg in other events.
     
  6. brovol

    brovol Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    1,436
    The basketball throw is all about technique and practice. My son was very close to the max and then hurt his clavicle in soccer before taking the cfa. He was in the high 60 when he started. And was throwing it about 98-99 before getting injured. It is nothing like a baseball throw. He ended up with his knees on an angle, and he learned to essentially catapult the ball, using his midsection to torque and sling the ball. Play with the height to find the best trajectory.

    My son never maxed that element after his injury, but he ended up doing the CFA later than expected because of the injury and didn't have as much opportunity to practice after school started. Still did well on the CFA.

    The cfa is for sure something that with hard work can be improved by a lot, and those are valuable points on the WCS. It's a bigger deal that a lot of folks make it out to be. Keep working on it and get as many of those points as possible. Could be the difference between getting an appointment and not getting one.
     
    birdwatcher4125 likes this.
  7. shock-n-awe

    shock-n-awe Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2015
    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    184
    After reading about all of the successful applicants gaining admission to the Academy and what their whole profiles looked like, I don't believe maxing the BBall throw is a high priority. I always told DS during his application process to never leave ANY points on the table. But he only had so much time in a day, so he prioritized the importance of what he was doing to achieve his goals. DS took CFA at NASS and "passed" it and it was marked so on his portal. He wanted to max the CFA for those points however , and trained and practiced the event as it's administered the rest of the summer until football started. With minimal improvement on BBall throw, and talking to RC he decided to keep his original score and focus on other things.
    The point is, do your absolute best in all categories. However with CFA being 10%of the WCS, and the BBall throw being a fraction of that, it's a very small number. If the rest of your application is "Perfect ", and this is your last thing to max out, go for it!
    Otherwise studying, practicing, retaking, and crushing your ACT/SAT, getting a 4.0 gpa while taking the most challenging classes your school offers, Varsity sports and team captain, getting Eagle Scout, are some examples of much better areas to spend your time IMO.
    DS did well on his CFA compared to max numbers posted, but had less than 60 on BBall throw and is at WP now.
    Best of luck to you in this process!
     
    MoSwimmer66 and Detroit2023 like this.
  8. brovol

    brovol Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    1,436
    Without question, ACT/SAT scores are more important, and worthy of the most time and effort. And frankly, if your overall application is so impresive that your WCS is high enough to earn an appointment even in the most competitive of districts, then a minimally passing CFA score may indeed be perfectly fine. The reality for most applicants, though, is that their application will be submitted without the comfort of knowing they are so high on the other aspects of the application that the CFA points are irrelevant.

    The CFA is worth 10% of the total application score. Most moderately competitive districts have hundreds of applicants for a single appointment, and thus can come down to single digits distinguishing who gets that spot from those that don't. Two or three percentage of the entire WCS can be the difference between four years at West Point vs civilian college.

    The CFA is actually one factor that hard work will make a difference. It's controllable. So many other factors are not. Each candidate makes the choice. Working hard on the CFA doesn't have to mean you don't work hard on the ACT. The exercise is actually a nice break when doing all all the other stuff.
     
  9. shock-n-awe

    shock-n-awe Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2015
    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    184
    I don't disagree with what you're saying, but I didn't mean to imply my DS was so stellar that the couple CFA points wouldn't matter. The message we got was that his passing CFA score was fine and not to overthink it/do it, try to improve was fine but that was it. IMO, I've gotten the impression the Academy is more focused on the pu, su, and run scores. Probably why they started asking for videos of doing pu.

    My message to the OP was simply with a high BBall throw score already and was struggling to improve any closer to maxing , not to fret for the reasons I mentioned. He can choose to pursue a max score if that's his goal.
    I encourage all applicants to always work to get every point possible regardless of how "competitive " their district is, you don't know who you're competing against.
    And yes, always control what you can control and put your best application forward!
     
  10. shock-n-awe

    shock-n-awe Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2015
    Messages:
    190
    Likes Received:
    184
    Meant to say pull-ups and push-up video to verify proper form..
     
  11. birdwatcher4125

    birdwatcher4125 Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    21
    brovol & shock-n-awe,

    I think you both are spot on. The "leave no points on the table" and "spend your time & energy where you get the most bang for your buck" principles are both especially true for him because my DS has been homeschooled his whole life and that requires him to overcompensate in the areas he can control in the time he has left. The main reason I asked about the B-Ball throw is that, like brovol said, "The basketball throw is all about technique and practice". Most of the 25'+ that DS was able to coax out of his throw was sudden increases after small changes in technique. I was just looking for tips-n-tricks to help coax out another 20'+. After-all, more feet=more points.

    That being said, you're both definitely right about the SAT/ACT being more important than retaking the CFA, (he passed with a 562 "No Risk" at SLE). But, he needs every point he can get being a homeschool kid. He wants to score a 650+ on the CFA retake.

    As far as how competitive our district is, I have absolutely no idea. We live in Northeast Wisconsin in a fairly rural Congressional district, but I really don't know anything about how competitive it is to win an appointment to any of the academies in our neck of the woods. Maybe you can give me some insight on that, even though DS will pursue every point like he lives in New York state.

    But, if you wouldn't mind scanning my DS' stats and give me some advice on where he could improve and where he should focus his efforts, I'd really appreciate it. I'm a newby knit-wit at this stuff.

    ACT - 34 Composite; 35 English; 32 Math; 36 Reading; 33 Science
    SAT - 1490 Composite; 720 Reading & Writing; 770 Math (He's re-taking on 8/25)
    Eagle Scout with Bronze Palm (Twice elected Senior Patrol Leader)
    Attended Badger Boys State (Elected to State Assembly)
    Attended West Point SLE (Passed his CFA with "No Risk")
    Four year member of a Robotics Club that went to World Competition last year (Elected three years as Mechanical Team Captain)
    Cross Country and Track & Field for local Homeschool Association
    Seven years of Piano Instruction
    Tons of volunteer time

    Thanks again for your advice and encouragement.
     
  12. brovol

    brovol Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    1,436
    He has an outstanding application, regardless of district. I don't have much insight with homeschool applications, but his resume is very good. Not having a varsity letter, or an officer spot on student council or NHS are things that homeschoolers just need to deal with, and I suspect the academies understand. Everything else looks solid.

    I have no idea what the competitiveness is within your district, but you never know what other stellar applicants might exist, even in a less competitive area, so I like your kids attitude.

    All a kid can do is to work hard, stay motivated and committed, and never stop pushing to make that application as good as it can be. Those that do tend to get spots.

    Your son will be in the running for sure. Good luck.
     
  13. birdwatcher4125

    birdwatcher4125 Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    21
    Thanks brovol, you are very kind and encouraging.
     
  14. brovol

    brovol Member

    Joined:
    May 26, 2015
    Messages:
    1,584
    Likes Received:
    1,436
    I'm actually not that kind.
     
    usmajy likes this.