What is Disc Golf – The Basics Explained
Disc golf is an outdoor sport played like golf, but instead of a golf ball and clubs, the game is played using flying discs into a metal basket-like target.
The first disc golf game happened in 1927 in Bladworth, Saskatchewan, Canada while modern disc golf was said to have started in the United States in the late 1960s. The game was formalized in the 1970s and the first disc golf course was opened in 1975 in the state of California.
Since then, the sport became popular with thousands of registered golf courses and an estimated half a million regular players in the United States alone.
Over the years, the sport grew in popularity and according to WFDF (the World Flying Disc Federation) disc golf is available to play in 45 countries.
How Disc Golf is Played
Instead of aiming for holes using golf balls and clubs, disc golf uses disc golf discs and disc golf baskets with metal chains where the discs will land. The objective of the game is to play each hole with the least number of throws possible.
The hole is completed when the golf disc rests in the disc golf basket target or what is called a pole hole. And the player with the lowest total strokes for the entire course wins.
Generally, a disc golf course has 9 or 18 holes with distances. Disc golf players start at a hole and play through to the last hole. The game starts by throwing a disc golf disc from a tee area to the target and will continue to do from where the previous throw landed until the target is reached.
The first tee or tee-off order is based on mutual agreement or by the flipping discs while the tee of order on succeeding holes is determined by the previous hole’s score.
A mini marker which is a small disc (not used for playing) that complies with the Professional Disc Golf Association’s Standards is used to mark the position of the disc previously thrown. For example, when a disc is stuck about 2 meters above the ground, the mini marker is placed exactly beneath the thrown disc golf before it is removed. The game proceeds where the next throw is done from directly behind where the marker lies.
Disc Golf Tips for Beginners
Playing disc golf is pretty straightforward. Although there are some complex rules that you need to familiarize, these can be learned as you progress in the game.
Let us not focus on the game mechanics first but instead, let us go over how you can start enjoying disc golf and improve your game.
- As a newbie, I would highly recommend that you pick golf discs that are meant for beginners. You may also read tips on finding the right disc for beginners and such to narrow down your search while at the same time understanding which discs are for which skill level.
- Having the right disc golf disc is related to our second beginner’s tip. If the disc is too hard to throw, you will find it hard to develop throwing techniques. How the rim of the disc will affect your shots.
- Learn the technique when throwing like the grip, the X step, the hip rotation, follow through, and the main throwing styles backhand and forehand.
- I would always say that being mentally and physically prepared are the most essential factors that contribute to your success as a disc golf player. I recommend doing routine exercises and steady workouts to help you stay in excellent shape. Have a positive mindset to turn bad shots into positive ones. A positive mental attitude will help you focus on each shot and allow you to play better.
- Find time to practice daily to work on different aspects of the game such as putting, driving, and approaching. You may be only disc golf for leisure but a few hours of regular practice can make you a better player.
- Utilize videos, articles, and other resources to help you learn the game. Watching videos is not only entertaining but you also get to learn the best techniques from the pro.
- Lastly, be patient and have fun when you are on the field.