Last night I went to a friend’s BBQ party, and three interesting things happened: I broke up a dogfight (wow, that was crazy), afterwards someone said ‘frolf’ during a conversation, and then lastly someone else said ‘frolf’ again within the same hour.
Even though the dogfight was crazy and gave me minor injuries and quite the adrenaline rush, the use of the word ‘frolf’ captured my attention the most, and it got me thinking…
The sport of Disc Golf is still growing, but there are a lot of players that don’t understand how truly amazing Disc Golf is.
Here is my short guide to welcoming new players to the wonderful sport of Disc Golf.
Be convincing that’s it’s worth their time. Take them to a scenic and/or relatively flat course – it will be more playable and enjoyable for a beginner.
I personally recommend buying them a beer (21 and over of course!) before the round, or buy/give them a disc… It will have more impact on whether they play again or not.
A new player will always ask, “What’s the best disc to use?” and you should give options – and in my years of playing, you should always say “mid-range” and a recommendation. Once they have played, they will find a certain disc that fits their hand and throwing style.
Give them a crash-course on the physics of how a golf disc flies. Teach them what understable, overstable, and stable is. I recommend throwing a couple discs from your bag to demonstrate – also, let them know about thumbing (thumber) and tomahawking. For right-handed throwers, thumbing will make the disc curve to the left, and opposite for tomahawks.
ALWAYS be courteous. A lot of new players take a while to learn and straighten their throw, make sure you’re quiet and patient during throws and be positive towards them no matter how far they go off course – and congratulate them on successful fairway drives!
This wonderful sport still needs a lot of players. If you play, don’t be afraid to invite a friend you think might like hitting chains for the first time – chances are, they wanted to hang out and have a great time outside anyway.
Lots of Chain Noise,
After playing this wonderful sport for years, a special situation occurred today in the heart of Atlanta at Perkerson Park.
When I threw my 2010 Champion Innova TL from mid-fairway, there were no worries. I was sure to find it; no brush, weeds or growth to over think about… I thought.
Walking roughly 150 feet away, once I was in the landing zone, I knew I was wrong. Ivy EVERYWHERE. I threw an orange disc, so that should be visible, right?
The small, but plentiful dead ivy leaves turned to a beautiful Autumn orange color, and gathered underneath the still healthy.
“Let’s just leave it.”, I said.
Finding the disc would be a needle in the haystack challenge, and I have two in the group: J.T. Hamman & new friend to Dogleg Tommy Lesesne who diligently helped and cared as a disc golfer should.
We were close to the basket with a blind view of the tee pad behind us, hoping no one was angry in our time consuming search.
Out of (what seemed) NOWHERE a disc golfer behind us approached and noticed we were looking for a lost disc. He not only decided to help, but to physically exert himself down a steep slope 250′ away, approach strangers, and help find a disc; knowing: “Find it or not, I still need to backtrack on this hole.”
In my opinion, that’s how you play good disc golf. I made sure I shook his hand.
My disc was found, and he’s the one that found it.
Just as I usually do, I found out about something very cool last minute and by accident.
Two of the best disc golfers in the world: Will Schusterick & Paige Pierce hosted a clinic at Oregon Park near Dallas, GA last night, and it was fantastic! The majority of their training wasn’t new to anyone there (grips, stances, etc.), but it was nice to ask true professionals questions that you can’t ask just anyone.
Will was able to help me with my up-shot wrist work with tremendous results. My wrist was too tight, and he fixed it. That’s something I could have not learned without a real face to face training session.
Paige was also able to help me and many correct their distant putting by focusing on follow-through. I was much more accurate at about 40 feet after Paige demonstrated techniques.
I think one of the best times of the evening is getting the Dogleg shirt signed!
Overall it was great to support the local disc golf scene and two of the best disc golfers out there. Will and Paige are truly great people with a lot of class. Make sure you root for them this weekend for The Hall of Fame Classic here in GA!
Hey Dogleggers! We have our own fantasy League now! It’s private, so email me to receive the code to join: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The first tournament in the Dogleg league is on March 15th, but there are only 14 spots left, so sign up quickly if you are interested!
Even though I was never a huge football fan, and I’m still not — especially since getting married, I would enjoy playing Fantasy Football with my friends. It was a way to have a fun connection to the guys and the games every Sunday — a reason to watch.
Recently I found PlayFantasyDiscGolf.com. It is a simple concept of picking 4 Professional Disc Golfers for events to win, and you earn points if you are correct, and at the end of the season you can win some pretty cool prizes!
You can create your own league, or join others. I haven’t analyzed the site all that well yet, but it looks much easier and more inviting than Fantasy Football.
I want to keep this post short, because there is only 1 day to join a league (or more than one if you want!) and make your first picks for the first tournament this Wednesday, The Memorial.
visit PlayFantasyDiscGolf.com and check out the rules, the F.A.Q.’s, join and get started!!
This could be pretty fun!
A long time ago a friend of mine who just started playing Disc Golf asked me a fantastic question:
“What is more important… manipulating the angle of the disc to fly how you want it to, or understanding how the disc is supposed to fly when thrown flat, and utilize it’s natural characteristics?”
The first thing I said, and I would think most would agree, is that you need to understand how your disc flies naturally first. Not only how it is supposed to fly new, but how it will eventually fly after you have hit all those darn trees and broke it in. You can really only determine this with your own experimentation disc to disc since no one knows how much bark you’ve made fly!
The rule of thumb with plastic is the cheaper it is, the quicker it will become understable with use. And for some plastics such as the Discraft Titanium plastic, that disc will fly the same as brand new forever. The Titanium plastic is close to indestructible. Don’t rely on expensive plastics to change flight characteristics too much over time.
Also, more expensive is not always best. One of the cheapest plastics you can buy is the Discraft Pro-D, I have an XL Pro-D, and it’s a staple in my bag. It’s crucial for me because after years of use it went from stable to understable, and I now use it as a roller or a predictable turnover disc.
Once you are very comfortable with how your disc flies (make sure you are using the same grip, speed, etc. to ensure predictability), then move on to manipulating your hyzer and anhyzer shots.
With proper practice and experimentation you will know if a disc thrown flat will give you exactly what you need without the huge unpredictability of angling a hyzer or anhyzer.
Grip, Throw, Repeat,
Recently I had the pleasure of playing White Oak Park in Dallas, GA. A beautiful open hilly course — nice little pond that comes into to play for holes after 14 too. The air was a bit brisk, but certainly a good day to hear chains as always. After about 6 holes I noticed my go-to Sidewinder not having the same glide it usually has. This made me think…
I’m not a meteorologist or a physicist, but proper disc weight in adverse conditions, no matter the skill level, is extremely important!
Over the years I have heard that low weight discs (roughly 150-168) are easier for distance, but hard to release and control consistently, especially with wind. Heavier discs are naturally more over-stable (slightly), harder to gain distance, but consistent. I find that this is very true.
BUT… I’ve yet to read about disc weights and how to adjust them according to the weather, mainly temperature.
I found that throwing my 172g Sidewinder feels like throwing a 190g when it’s coat-wearing time. It sunk like the Titanic on my first moderate up-shot this last weekend. I bought a 154g disc today to compare, and I had a tremendous improvement.
I highly recommend adjusting your disc weight according to the outside temperature. In these low temperatures of Winter (high 40’s right now here in Georgia) my go-to weight is 160 now, but I am not a high speed thrower. The beauty of Disc Golf is you need to find what works best for YOU. Right now, for me, it seems that lighter weight cuts the cold air a bit better.
Peripheral Blood Flow
While playing at White Oak, the great J.T. of this blog made an EXCELLENT point. When the weather is cold, our hands don’t have as much blood flow and do not move and react as they normally do. So naturally when we throw the disc it may not have the same release point, usually late-whipping it way off track — to the right for right handed back handed throwers.
The way he remedied this is by using a modified fan grip on his drives as he would a long approach shot. Since the fingers aren’t tucked in the rim, they don’t need to get out of the way in time, giving you a smooth release. As long as you have grip on the disc and can still snap it, this is a fantastic modification for cold weather conditions.
As always, these points and tips are something to read, enjoy, and go by – not to live by. Disc Golf is truly amazing because it’s personal. In order to become great you have to practice A LOT and define your own game. I just hope the tips and stories we share here at Dogleg Disc Golf steer you into a happy and successful direction.
After reading J.T.’s review of Legacy Park, I thought I would take the trip to Kennesaw and check out the lil’ 9-holer. The course is in a beautiful community that is extremely well maintained, but as you may have already read in previous posts, the course is private to residents and/or their guests.
I LOVED the little course, and it may be my number one favorite course in Georgia so far. BUT… I feel the reason may have been the day I chose to play Legacy. 68 degrees, perfect breeze, leaves falling and squirrels everywhere gathering for winter. It was simply beautiful disc golf or no disc golf.
The best thing about Legacy may be it’s downfall. It is extremely accessible to beginners and is certainly the course that hooks a newbie into the sport, but serious disc golfers may be bored with it’s mainly ace-able holes and lack of diversity on the land.
What this course is PERFECT for is working on your straight game, and I can’t stress enough the importance of a fairway driver. While not as fast as a distance driver, it will go where you put it without a lot of fade.
I throw the Innova TL, and exclusively threw it playing Legacy. I don’t know if I was just having a good day on the course, or the TL is truly amazing. I’m not a hard thrower, so it tends to go just as far as my distance drivers anyway, but it’s placement is reliable.
A lot of players think that throwing a distance driver means getting distance, but what may happen is they under power the disc and it doesn’t go any farther than a mid range would, and the disc dives to the ground where you didn’t want it. I’ve been there.
What I love about a fairway driver is not only how they fly, but how they feel. When I toss the TL, The grip is much more comfortable than a sharp distance driver, and it rips out of my hands with grace.
After having a wonderful day with the TL, I know what my go-to disc is now. The next time you need a straight beautiful drive, reach for your favorite fairway driver.
Here are a few pics from beautiful Legacy Park:
When I first started playing DG, I did what most of us did — I bought a random disc not knowing very much about it, went to a course not knowing how to throw, and ran up the tee-pad with confidence and flailed my arm as fast as I could. Much to my ignorant surprise, I sucked, and if there was a lady’s tee, I’m sure I didn’t go past it.
Early in my DG days I heard the phrase, “Drive for show, Putt for dough.” There’s a lot of truth to that, and that’s how I have structured my game the past 5 years, but you cant win regularly without a well rounded game. I am usually solid at putting and approaching, but haven’t quite mastered the hit of the drive.
Recently I found an excellent video on YouTube that focuses on working from the hit (the acceleration and release at the end of the throw) backwards. It focuses on how very important it is to keep that disc very close to your body, and have an exponential acceleration, if you will… A slow pull across, and a burst of acceleration at the end.
I know this video will help me tremendously with my long game, and I hope it will for you too!