Disc golf is growing in popularity as a competitive sport. Those who are not familiar with the game may appreciate a basic introduction to disc golf before they begin playing. Disc golf is like any other sport with rules for play, specific equipment to use, competitions and organizations that promote the game. It can be a lot of fun for families with kids of all ages to play recreationally.
Disc golf is played on a course similar to a ball golf course. Instead of a small hole in the ground there is a large, vertical basket standing 4 feet above the ground with chains hanging around the basket. Golfers throw discs specifically designed for disc golf at toward the basket. There are many manufacturers of these special discs and a wide variety of types. Similar to golf there are discs for drives, putting and rolling. Rolling is throwing the disc so that it curves around an obstacle. Discs are available in different weights as well. These discs are not the Frisbees that so many people use for recreational purposes, but modified throwing discs. As with other sports it takes practice to master the skills for this game.
Disc golf is similar to ball golf in that the lowest score wins. One point or stroke is counted each time the disc is thrown and each hole has a par or expected number of throws to successfully complete the hole. Players begin by teeing off from a designated spot on the course and throwing their disk towards the ‘hole.’ A marker is placed on the ground where the disc lands. If the disk ends up in a tree or other obstacle a marker is placed directly below that spot.
When driving, players are allowed to run up to their throw. Putting is done when the disc is within 10 feet of the hole and the player must not step past the marker when making a put. There are many different ways to throw a disc and beginners may benefit from some instruction in a backhand drive, forehand drive, backhand roller and the X step. These are the 4 basic throws used in disc golf.
Disc golf may not be familiar to everyone but there are many local, regional, state and professional competitions around the country who are working to change that. The Professional Disc Golf Association sponsors a national tour with divisions for pro men, pro women, amateur men and amateur women. There are also many teams at a variety of universities. Universities and colleges compete at the intramural level.
There are adult and family leagues throughout the United States that sponsor local competitions. Check online at sources such as DiscGolfScene.com for listings of local disc golf programs. There are also lists of courses and clubs.
Families and individuals interested in learning more about this fun game should contact a local club for more information. These clubs can also offer a basic introduction to disc golf to anyone who is interested in learning more about the game.