Disc golf is a lovely sport with a growing following. Even in pop culture, the sport has begun making more appearances.
It’s no question, though, that the sport is still unknown to many.
We Know – Disc Golf Terminology Can Be Confusing. We’re Here To Help.
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering what the deal is with disc golf, you’re not alone. The disc golf scene can make the sport seem quite complicated, but the reality is the sport is simple and accessible for so many people.
Before You Step Foot on a Disc Golf Course or Buy A Golf Disc, You Need to Read This Guide.
Many cities have disc golf courses available for public access, and your city may be one. A quick internet search for, “Disc Golf Courses Near Me,” should yield a good amount of results. However, you may be intimidated to check out the course if you’ve never been to one before.
Disc golf courses are often pleasant places to get some relaxing recreation and if you follow a couple of etiquette guidelines and know what to expect ahead of time, you’ll really enjoy yourself.
Though they vary, traditionally disc golf courses have either 9 or 18 holes and all holes are played through to complete one “round.” Each hole is outfitted with a tee area, a hole, and an area between the two called the fairway. The fairway may have obstacles like hills, trees, plans, or even bodies of water.
If you know the rules of golf, you’ll fit right in at a disc golf course. Disc golf rules nearly mimic the basic rules of ball golf in that each throw is initiated from the place your last throw landed you, with the exception of your first throw which happens from the tee area.
When you get close enough to the hole, you’ll need to “putt” in. Most holes will have a chain setup to help your disc land in the basket, but some may have poles or other targets. In any case, the targets will likely be marked and easily identifiable.
Ok, You’ve Got the Rules. What about Equipment?
All you need to start playing disc golf is a flying disc. How convenient!
That’s what is so great about playing disc golf, it’s accessible for everyone.
But, don’t think professional disc golf players are walking out onto the course with only one disc. All you need to start playing disc golf is one disc. There are tons of varieties of discs, all with specialized purposes. More advanced players utilize an arsenal of discs to perfect their play but you really only need one for beginner play.
Other Aspects of Gameplay You Should be Ready For.
As with any sport, there are of course official and unofficial guidelines you should keep in mind.
Official gameplay rules and standards are created by the Professional Disc Golf Association. The most basic aspects of the official rulebook to keep in mind are
- Play begins at the tee
- Each successive throw is made from where your disc landed on the last throw
- The hole is completed once the disc successfully lands in the basket (or hits the target)
- Upon completing a hole, you should advance to the tee area of the next hole
- The course should be played as it is found – this includes rough terrain and natural obstacles
There are, of course, some unofficial etiquette guidelines you need to note. Some of these guidelines are just good common sense, but some you may not have considered.
Players should not throw in a way that could injure another player or bystander, distract another player from safe gameplay or take any action that could be considered unsportsmanlike or dangerous. Additionally, the official rules of disc golf explicitly state that littering, cursing and other unsavory behavior have no place on the disc golf course.
Traditionally, players throw from the tee box in the order of their score from the previous hole. Those that were able to complete the previous hole in the fewest strokes are allowed to throw first.
In the broader sense, traditions on the disc golf course follow those of ball golf. Throwers should never throw blindly into an area that they are unsure of. Also, players general remain quiet while teammates or opponents throw. Lastly, it is considered polite to stand out of the fairway while others are playing, even if you feel certain you aren’t going to be in the way.
Disc Golf and Disc Golf Courses Shouldn’t be Intimidating.
Disc golf is by nature an accessible sport designed for all levels of ability and access. It shouldn’t be intimidating to anyone.
Though the unknown can cause concern, hopefully, this guide has helped you feel more confident about your ability to get outside, grab a disc, head to a disc golf course near you, and play a round!