Disc Golf Terminology Guide: Essential Terms!

Welcome to our comprehensive guide to disc golf terminology! Whether you’re new to the sport or looking to expand your knowledge, understanding the language of disc golf is essential for improving your game and enjoying the community. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the essential terms every disc golfer should know, from flight characteristics to throwing techniques and course etiquette.

A

Ace

  • Definition: An “ace” in disc golf is the equivalent of a “hole-in-one” in traditional golf. It occurs when a player successfully throws their disc into the basket from the tee box in a single throw. Aces are celebrated achievements in the sport, often requiring precision, skill, and a bit of luck to accomplish.

Air bounce (air bump)

  • Definition: An “air bounce” or “air bump” is a phenomenon in disc golf where a disc rises suddenly during its flight due to the influence of wind currents. This unexpected lift can alter the disc’s trajectory and distance, sometimes resulting in unpredictable outcomes. Players must account for air bounces when assessing wind conditions and planning their throws, especially on open courses with significant wind exposure.

Albatross (double eagle)

  • Definition: In disc golf, an “albatross” or “double eagle” occurs when a player completes a hole three throws under par. Achieving an albatross is a rare and impressive feat, typically requiring a combination of exceptional distance, accuracy, and strategic shot selection. Players may aim for albatrosses on longer, more challenging holes where reaching the basket in fewer throws offers a significant scoring advantage.

Anhyzer (Anny)

  • Definition: An “anhyzer,” often abbreviated as “anny,” is a throwing technique in disc golf where a player releases the disc at an angle that has the left side (for right-handed backhand players) higher than the right side upon release. This angle causes the disc to initially fly to the right before gradually leveling out or fading back to the left. Anhyzer shots are commonly used to navigate curved fairways or avoid obstacles, offering versatility and control in various course conditions.

Approach shot

  • Definition: An “approach shot,” also known as an “upshot,” is a throw in disc golf aimed at getting the disc close enough to the basket to set up an easy putt. Approach shots require accuracy, touch, and the ability to control both distance and trajectory. Players often use midrange or putter discs for approach shots, selecting discs that offer reliable control and minimal fade to ensure accurate placement near the basket.

Away (away player)

  • Definition: In disc golf, the term “away” refers to a player whose disc has landed farthest from the basket compared to the other players in their group. The away player is typically the next to throw, following the principle of “furthest out, throw first.” This convention helps maintain pace of play and orderliness during a round, allowing each player to take their turn efficiently.

B

Backhand

  • Definition: The “backhand” is a fundamental throwing technique in disc golf where the back of the player’s grip hand is generally facing the target (usually the basket) until the disc leaves the thrower’s hand. Backhand throws utilize a pulling motion across the body, generating spin and power to propel the disc forward. This throwing style is preferred by many players for its natural feel and ability to achieve controlled flight paths.

Bag tag

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “bag tag” is a physical marker, often of plastic or metal, bearing a unique number and a club’s emblem. These tags, distributed to club or league members, spur camaraderie and competition. Through tag rounds, players compete for lower scores to obtain tags with lower numbers. Bag tags foster friendly rivalry and motivate skill improvement, encouraging active engagement in the disc golf community, enhancing the sport’s overall experience.

Bagger (short for Sandbagger)

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “bagger,” short for “sandbagger,” refers to a player who competes in a division below their actual skill level in order to gain a competitive advantage and increase their chances of winning. Sandbagging can undermine the integrity of tournament play by creating uneven matchups and unfair outcomes. Tournament organizers and fellow players often frown upon sandbagging behavior and may take measures to discourage or penalize it.

Basket

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “basket” is the target designed to catch thrown discs. Usually comprising a metal frame with hanging chains, baskets halt the disc’s flight and guide it into a central tray. Found in diverse designs, from portable setups to permanent course installations, baskets serve as players’ ultimate goal. Success involves landing discs within the basket’s confines, marking the completion of a hole.

Bead

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “bead” refers to a ridge or edge located on the bottom of the rim of a disc. Beads are found on certain disc molds and serve multiple purposes, including enhancing grip, providing tactile feedback to the thrower’s fingers, and influencing the disc’s flight characteristics. Discs with beads may offer a more secure grip for certain throwing styles and grip techniques, allowing players to achieve greater control and consistency in their throws.

Birdie

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “birdie” happens when a player finishes a hole with one throw under par. Securing a birdie usually requires strategic throws, navigating the course effectively to land the disc near the basket. Celebrated in the sport, birdies showcase skillful play and smart shot choices. Players aim for multiple birdies per round to boost their score and competitive position, highlighting the importance of precise execution and course management.

Black ace

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “black ace” happens when a player throws from a tee pad and unintentionally lands their disc in a different basket in a single throw. These rare events occur on courses with closely situated baskets. While amusing, black aces don’t affect a player’s score for the intended hole and are usually shared as humorous anecdotes rather than strategic accomplishments.

Blow through

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “blow through” happens when a thrown disc hits the central area of the basket’s chains but doesn’t settle inside. Instead, it maintains enough velocity to pass through and continue its trajectory. While frustrating for players aiming for successful putts, blow throughs are part of the game, influenced by factors like disc speed and chain tension. They add an element of challenge to the sport.

Bounce out (bounce back)

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “bounce out” or “bounce back” happens when a thrown disc hits the central pole of a basket with enough force to rebound out instead of staying inside. These occur due to high-speed impacts or angled throws toward the pole. While frustrating, they’re a natural part of the game, requiring skillful putting techniques to minimize their impact on scores.

Brick

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “brick” refers to a disc with limited glide, akin to a falling brick. These discs, often with low glide ratings, struggle to maintain loft and travel distance. Bricks are favored for short throws or windy conditions, offering stability and reliability. Though they lack distance, they provide control and precision, enabling accurate shots in diverse course scenarios.

C

Cali (short for California)

  • Definition: In disc golf doubles rounds, “Cali,” derived from “California,” denotes a solo player without a partner. To balance the absence of a teammate, Cali players receive an extra throw per hole, aiding them in drives, approaches, or putts. This additional throw offers strategic advantages, empowering Cali players to navigate the course independently. Success hinges on their individual skills and strategic choices, as they aim for competitive results amidst paired opponents.

Card

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “card” is a scorecard used to track players’ scores in rounds or tournaments. It includes player names, play order, and spaces for hole-by-hole scores. Players on the same card start together, progressing through the course, taking turns throwing, and recording scores. Effective card management ensures accurate scorekeeping, monitors player performance, and promotes fairness in competitive play.

Casual (casual relief)

  • Definition: In disc golf, “casual relief” pertains to hazards or obstacles that won’t penalize players. If a disc lands in or on such a hazard, like dense foliage or temporary obstacles, players can mark their lie behind it, away from the basket. This rule offers relief from challenging conditions without penalty, ensuring fair gameplay for all skill levels.

Casual water

  • Definition: In disc golf, “casual water” denotes non-permanent wet areas on the course that won’t penalize players. If a disc lands in or near casual water, like puddles or soggy terrain, players can take relief without penalty. This rule recognizes the temporary nature of water hazards, allowing players to navigate challenges without undue punishment for factors beyond their control.

Chastity belt

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “chastity belt” is a metal band encircling the top of certain basket brands. It acts as a protective barrier, preventing discs from bouncing out after entering the basket’s catching area. This feature promotes fair outcomes by minimizing bounce-outs and ensuring that well-thrown discs are rewarded with successful putts, contributing to consistent results and a more enjoyable playing experience.

Circle, the

  • Definition: In disc golf, “the circle” denotes the 10-meter radius around a basket, dictating putting regulations. Inside this zone, players must exhibit balance post-putt and avoid falling forward. Putts from beyond the circle require balance if landing inside to evade penalties. With dimensions typically 10 meters or about 32 feet and 9 ¾ inches from the basket, the circle sets the standard for permitted putting methods and scoring criteria, ensuring consistent play across courses.

Come-back putt

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “come-back putt” occurs when a player putts again after missing and their disc goes past the basket. Following an initial miss, players aim to make a successful second putt to finish the hole without extra strokes. Executing come-back putts demands precision and confidence, enabling players to recover momentum and salvage their scores after facing challenges on the green.

CTP (Closest to The Pin)

  • Definition: In disc golf, “CTP” stands for “Closest to The Pin,” a contest determining the player whose disc lands nearest to the basket, usually during the drive on a specific hole. These competitions enhance rounds with friendly rivalry and skill-based challenges, rewarding accuracy and precision. Winners often receive recognition or prizes, fostering camaraderie and competitive spirit among players during casual or tournament play.

Cut roll

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “cut roll” happens when a player aims for a roller shot, but the disc lacks vertical stability upon landing, veering left (for RHBH throws). It can also occur if a disc hits the ground at an angle and rolls in a certain direction. Cut rolls add challenge and unpredictability to shots, demanding players to consider terrain, disc choice, and throwing technique to achieve desired results on the course.

D

Death putt

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “death putt” is a tough putt toward a basket near a hazard, out-of-bounds area, or obstacle. The term “death” highlights the risk, as missing may lead to the disc rolling into a hazard, incurring penalty strokes. Players must weigh aggression against control, considering the consequences carefully to manage their round effectively.

Distance Driver

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “distance driver” describes a golf disc crafted to maximize throw distance at high speeds. These discs boast thick rims and aerodynamic profiles tailored for lengthy flights. They’re go-tos for tee shots on open fairways or when players need extensive throws. Offering various stability ratings, distance drivers provide versatility, letting players adapt shots to diverse courses and winds.

DFL (Dead ******* Last)

  • Definition: In disc golf, “DFL” humorously labels the player finishing last in a tournament or division. This acronym, highlighting the bottom of the leaderboard, is jovially exchanged among players, recognizing the game’s trials. Despite its casual tone, DFL underscores the competitive camaraderie among disc golfers, transcending individual performance.

DNF (Did Not Finish)

  • Definition: In disc golf, “DNF” signifies “Did Not Finish,” indicating a player’s incomplete tournament participation due to reasons like injury or disqualification. PDGA standards often denote these scores as “999” or “888.” DNFs can affect a player’s ranking points or eligibility for future events, highlighting the importance of adhering to tournament rules and regulations.

Drive

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “drive” is the first throw from a tee pad, crucial for setting up subsequent shots and positioning relative to the basket. Players often rely on distance drivers to maximize distance and fairway positioning. Successful driving demands power, technique, and strategic course management to navigate obstacles effectively and capitalize on scoring opportunities.

Driver

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “driver” signifies a specialized disc crafted for long-distance throws, featuring aerodynamic designs with thick rims for high-speed, far-reaching flights. Mainly used for expansive fairway tee shots or when substantial distances are needed, drivers come in various stability ratings to suit different techniques and courses. They significantly influence players’ strategies, shaping the game’s dynamics.

Drop Zone

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “drop zone” is a designated area on the course where players must throw from due to rule violations or missed shots. Often used as penalty zones for missing mandatory obstacles or landing out-of-bounds, drop zones require players to advance after a penalty stroke. Strategically placed, they balance challenge and fairness, offering players opportunities to recover while maintaining the game’s integrity and scoring standards.

E

Eagle

  • Definition: In disc golf, an “eagle” happens when a player finishes a hole two strokes under par. It demands skill and precision, navigating the course efficiently to score lower than par. Eagles are significant achievements, celebrated highlights of a player’s round or tournament. They swing momentum and enhance overall scores, showcasing excellence and strategic prowess on the course..

F

Fade

  • Definition: In disc golf, “fade” refers to a disc’s tendency to drift left (for right-handed backhand throws) as it slows near the end of flight. Represented by the fourth number in flight ratings, fade influences a disc’s descent behavior. Discs with high fade move more leftward, suitable for controlled approaches. Understanding fade helps players select discs for various shot scenarios, maximizing scoring potential on the course.

Fairway Driver

  • Definition: A “fairway driver” in disc golf is designed for controlled distance shots on fairways and approaches, with speed ratings typically between 6 and 9. They offer easier control and maneuverability through tight fairways, featuring moderate rim widths and stability ratings for consistent flights and predictable fade.

G

Glide

  • Definition: Glide in disc golf refers to a disc’s ability to maintain loft and carry during flight, indicated by the second number in the flight rating system. Discs with high glide stay airborne longer, making them ideal for maximizing distance with minimal effort. Understanding glide helps players select discs for different shot situations and improve overall performance.

Grip

  • Definition: Grip is the technique a disc golfer uses to hold and control the disc during a throw. Effective grip is crucial for accuracy, power, and consistency in shots. Different grip styles, like backhand, forehand, and power grip, offer varying control and flight characteristics, allowing players to master different shot types.

H

Hazard

  • In disc golf, a “Hazard” refers to areas on the course designated with penalties for landing or crossing into them. Hazards often include bodies of water, dense rough, or out-of-bounds areas, adding challenge and strategic complexity to gameplay. Discs landing in hazards incur penalty strokes, testing players’ skill and decision-making abilities while navigating the course.

Hole

  • In disc golf, a “Hole” denotes a designated segment of the course, featuring a tee pad where players commence and a basket marking the endpoint. Each hole presents unique challenges and strategic opportunities, demanding players to navigate terrain, obstacles, and varying distances skillfully to achieve successful outcomes and optimal scores.

Hyzer

  • Definition: Hyzer is a throwing technique where the disc is released at an angle with the outer edge higher than the inner edge, causing it to curve left (for right-handed backhand throws). Players use hyzer shots to navigate left-turning fairways and shape shots around obstacles. Adjusting the angle of release controls the amount of turn and fade exhibited by the disc. Mastering the hyzer technique is essential for a versatile throwing repertoire.

Hyzer Flip

  • Definition: Hyzer flip is a disc golf throw where a player releases a slightly understable disc on a hyzer angle, causing it to turn from left to flat before fading slightly to the right (for right-handed backhand throws). This shot shape is useful for navigating wooded fairways, tight lines, and maximizing distance with controlled accuracy. Mastering the hyzer flip requires understanding the disc’s stability and the angle of release to achieve the desired flight path.

J

Jump Putt

  • Definition: A jump putt in disc golf is a technique used when a player is outside the putting circle (usually 10 meters). It involves releasing the disc while jumping toward the basket, adding momentum for longer putts. Jump putts demand accuracy and distance control to land the disc in the basket without risking overshooting or rollaways.

K

Kick

  • Definition: In disc golf, a kick refers to a change in the disc’s direction upon hitting an obstacle like a tree or rock. Kicks can redirect the disc favorably toward the target or unfavorably off course. The outcome depends on impact angle, disc velocity, and obstacle characteristics. Players must adapt swiftly to unexpected kicks to salvage their shots.

L

Lay-up

  • Definition: A lay-up in disc golf is a conservative strategy where a player intentionally throws short of the target to set up an easier subsequent shot. It’s used when there’s a high risk of overshooting or landing in a hazardous area. By prioritizing accuracy and positioning over power, players aim to secure an easier putt and minimize scoring penalties.

Lid

  • Definition: In disc golf terminology, “lid” refers to a type of disc with a thin rim and a flat, wide profile, reminiscent of traditional Frisbees. Lids typically have minimal aerodynamic features, resulting in floaty, slower flights compared to modern golf discs. Examples of lid discs include the Discraft Rattler, Innova Birdie, and Polecat. While less common in competitive play, lids are favored by some players for their unique flight characteristics and nostalgic appeal.

Lie

  • Definition: In disc golf, the term “lie” refers to the spot where a player’s thrown disc comes to rest after a throw. Players are required to mark their lie by placing a mini marker disc directly behind the thrown disc or leaving the thrown disc in place. The lie serves as the reference point for subsequent throws, determining the player’s stance and throwing options. Properly marking the lie is essential for maintaining fair play and adhering to the rules of the game.

Line

  • Definition: In disc golf, “line” denotes the intended trajectory or flight path of a throw. A good hole offers multiple lines, catering to various styles. Players strategize to choose the best line for reaching the basket efficiently. Wind, obstacles, and terrain shape this decision, prompting players to adapt their throws for successful course navigation.

Low-speed Stability (See Fade)

  • Definition: Low-speed stability, indicated by a disc’s fade rating, describes its tendency to veer left (for right-handed backhand throws) as speed decreases toward the end of its flight. This influences the disc’s finish and resistance to turning over. High stability yields pronounced leftward fade, ideal for controlled approaches near the basket.

M

Mando (Mandatory)

  • Definition: A “mando,” short for “mandatory,” directs a disc around an obstacle like a tree or pole as per course rules, usually marked by arrows or signs. Missing a mando results in a penalty stroke, increasing the hole’s challenge. Double mandos, between two objects, test accuracy and strategy. Planning shots to meet mandos is crucial for competitive scoring.

Marker (or Marker Disc)

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “marker” or “marker disc” is a small disc, usually a mini disc, used to mark the spot where a player’s thrown disc lands. Placed directly in front of the thrown disc, it indicates the lie and serves as a reference for subsequent throws, staying within a 30-centimeter radius to comply with gameplay rules. Using a distinct marker disc facilitates swift and precise lie determination in competitive play.

Meathook

  • Definition: In disc golf slang, a “meathook” describes a disc with extreme overstable flight, sharply curving left (for right-handed backhand throws) upon release. Ideal for tight fairways or headwinds, they allow controlled hyzer shots, countering disc turnover, ensuring precise placement and reliable finishes. Adding meathook discs boosts players’ confidence on challenging courses.

Midrange

  • Definition: A “midrange” disc in disc golf is designed for shorter shots and controlled mid-range throws. Slower than drivers, it ensures accuracy and controlled trajectories. With thinner rims and enhanced stability, it offers increased control, ideal for navigating obstacles. Crucial for strategic shot selection and scoring in competitive play.

Mini Marker (or Mini)

  • Definition: A “mini marker” or “mini” in disc golf marks the lie of a thrown disc. These small discs, usually plastic or metal, are placed in front of the thrown disc, indicating its position for the next throw. They ensure accurate placement and adherence to game rules, essential for fair play and smooth gameplay in competitive and casual rounds.

Mulligan

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “mulligan” offers a player a second chance on a shot without penalty. Common in charity tournaments, players can purchase extra throws to improve performance or support causes. While not recognized in competitive PDGA play, mulligans allow recreational players to correct shots, enjoy the game, and contribute to charity.

N

Newbie

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “newbie” is someone new to the sport, typically lacking experience and familiarity with its rules, techniques, and strategies. Newbies often seek guidance from more seasoned players, attend introductory clinics, and gradually learn the nuances of the game. They bring enthusiasm to the community, contributing to its growth and inclusivity.

Niced

  • Definition: “Niced” is disc golf slang for praising a shot prematurely, only to see it result in an unexpected outcome like hitting a tree or missing a putt. The term adds a humorous twist to acknowledging a well-executed throw, highlighting the sport’s unpredictable nature and promoting humility among players.

Noodle Arm

  • Definition: “Noodle Arm” is a term used affectionately in disc golf for players who struggle with long throws due to limited arm strength or technique. They may have difficulty generating power, resulting in shorter drives compared to more experienced players. Despite this, they can still enjoy the game by focusing on accuracy and consistency rather than distance.

Nose

  • Definition: In disc golf, the “nose” refers to the leading edge of the disc as it travels through the air. Proper nose angle control is crucial for achieving desired flight characteristics, with adjustments influencing the disc’s stability, glide, and overall trajectory. Players strive to maintain the optimal nose angle throughout their throws to maximize distance, accuracy, and control.

O

OB (Out of Bounds)

  • Definition: “Out of Bounds” (OB) in disc golf refers to areas outside the designated playing zone where landed discs incur penalty strokes. Marked by lines, stakes, or indicators, OB zones require players to play from designated drop zones or take penalty strokes. OB rules enhance challenge and strategy, demanding precision and caution when navigating course hazards.

Overhead Shot

  • Definition: An “overhead shot” in disc golf involves releasing the disc in an upward motion to navigate obstacles or challenging terrain. Techniques like the tomahawk and thumber offer unique flight paths and advantages. These shots demand specialized grips and motions, serving as valuable tools for handling tough course layouts.

Overstable

  • Definition: In disc golf, “overstable” describes a disc’s resistance to turning in flight, finishing with a pronounced fade. These discs have larger rims and higher stability ratings, making them ideal for controlled shots that hook left (for right-handed backhand throwers). They excel in windy conditions and offer players confidence in shot selection and execution.

P

Par

  • Definition: In disc golf, “par” denotes the expected number of throws for a skilled player to complete a hole. Determined by factors like length and obstacles, shorter, simpler holes have lower pars, while longer, challenging ones have higher pars. Players aim to finish in as few throws as possible, matching or beating par for optimal scoring. Par assesses player performance relative to course difficulty and skill level.

Parked

  • Definition: In disc golf, when a throw lands exceptionally close to or under the basket, it’s termed “parked.” This epitomizes accuracy, positioning the player for an easy putt. Celebrated for their efficiency, parked shots boost player confidence and momentum, often earning cheers from competitors and setting the stage for success.

PDGA (Professional Disc Golf Association)

  • Definition: The Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) governs disc golf worldwide, setting rules, regulations, and tournament standards. Established in 1976, it promotes the sport’s growth through memberships, tournament sanctioning, and advocacy. The PDGA manages player ratings, championships, and community building across all skill levels. Membership grants access to official events, resources, and global connections with fellow disc golfers.

Penalty Stroke

  • Definition: A “penalty stroke” in disc golf refers to an additional throw added to a player’s score due to rule infractions or certain course conditions. Common situations that incur penalty strokes include landing out of bounds (OB), missing mandatory obstacles (mandos), or violating specific rules outlined by tournament directors. Penalty strokes ensure fairness and integrity during competitive play, deterring careless or unethical behavior.

Putt

  • Definition: A “putt” in disc golf denotes a short, controlled throw intended to land the disc in the basket, typically executed within close range of the target. Putts require precision and finesse, as players aim to accurately release the disc with enough power to reach the basket but without overshooting or veering off course. Disc golfers use various putting techniques, adapting their approach based on distance, terrain, and personal preference.

R

Rating

  • Definition: In disc golf, “rating” refers to a numerical measure of a player’s skill level, typically assigned by the Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) based on tournament performance. Higher ratings indicate greater proficiency and consistency in competition. PDGA ratings serve as a standardized method for evaluating and comparing individual skill levels within the disc golf community.

Rim

  • Definition: The “rim” of a disc in disc golf refers to the outer edge or circumference of the disc, where players typically grip the disc during throws. The rim’s width and depth play a significant role in determining a disc’s flight characteristics, stability, and overall feel in the hand. Discs with wider and deeper rims are designed for maximum speed and power, while narrower rims offer enhanced control and accuracy.

Rim Depth

  • Definition: “Rim depth” in disc golf describes the vertical measurement from the inner surface of the flight plate to the bottom of the disc’s rim. This dimension influences the grip and feel of the disc in a player’s hand, affecting comfort and control during throws. Discs with deeper rims may provide a more secure grip for players with larger hands, potentially allowing for increased power and stability in their shots.

Rim Width

  • Definition: “Rim width” refers to the horizontal measurement of the outer edge of a disc’s rim in disc golf. This dimension directly correlates with the disc’s speed rating, with wider rims typically associated with higher-speed discs designed for maximum distance drives. Narrower rim widths are common in midrange and putter discs, offering increased precision and maneuverability for shorter throws and approach shots.

Roller

  • Definition: A “roller” is a throwing technique in disc golf where the player intentionally releases the disc at an angle, causing it to land on its edge and roll along the ground. Rollers are utilized to navigate obstacles such as dense foliage or to achieve specific flight paths that might be challenging with traditional throws. Players can adjust the angle and speed of the roller to control its trajectory and maximize distance.

S

Safari Hole

  • Definition: A “safari hole” in disc golf refers to a makeshift or improvised hole layout that deviates from the standard course design. Players create safari holes by inventing new tee locations, fairway routes, or basket placements, often to add variety or challenge to familiar courses. Safari holes encourage creativity and experimentation, allowing players to experience existing courses in fresh and exciting ways.

Scooby Shot (Grenade)

  • Definition: The “Scooby shot,” or “Grenade,” is an unconventional disc golf technique where the player throws the disc upside down. Executed with a tomahawk or thumber grip, it creates a steep trajectory and sharp descent. This overhead shot is used to navigate tall obstacles or for low-flying shots that slide along the ground upon landing.

S-Curve

  • Definition: An “S-curve” in disc golf describes a flight path resembling the letter ‘S.’ The disc starts by turning right (for right-handed backhand throws) before gradually fading left. Precision in release angle and rotation speed, often with understable discs thrown flat, is key. Players use S-curves to navigate narrow fairways, shape shots, or maximize distance on certain holes.

Sidearm (Forehand)

  • Definition: The “sidearm,” or “forehand,” in disc golf is a throwing technique where the palm faces the direction of the throw. Like a sidearm in baseball, it generates power and spin through a whipping motion, ensuring a strong and accurate release. Players use sidearms to navigate tight fairways, execute controlled approaches, or shape shots around obstacles with precision.

Speed

  • Definition: “Speed” is one of the four flight characteristics describing a disc’s performance in disc golf. It indicates the velocity needed for the disc’s intended flight path. Higher speed ratings demand more arm speed for long-distance drives, while lower ratings allow easier control for shorter approaches and precision throws at slower speeds.

Spit Out

  • Definition: A “spit out” in disc golf is when a putt hits the chains but doesn’t stay inside the basket, falling out instead. Despite seemingly catching the chains, the disc loses momentum or angle upon impact, bouncing back or sliding off. Spit outs can be frustrating, especially after well-executed putts, often due to the variability of disc interaction with basket components.

Stable (Stability)

  • Definition: “Stability” in disc golf refers to a disc’s ability to maintain a straight flight path without excessive turning or fading. Stable discs fly predictably at different speeds and angles, suitable for both beginners and experienced players. They offer reliable performance in various wind conditions, favored for accurate drives, controlled approaches, and consistent putting.

Stamp

  • Definition: The “stamp” on a disc in disc golf is the graphic imprinted by the manufacturer. It serves as a visual identifier, featuring unique designs, logos, or branding elements. While primarily aesthetic, it also denotes the disc’s manufacturer, model, or special edition, influencing its appearance and collectible value.

Star Frame

  • Definition: A “star frame” in disc golf happens when all players on a scorecard achieve the same score on a hole. It reflects exceptional performance, requiring precision and consistency from each player. Star frames are rare, especially on challenging holes, but highlight players’ skill and camaraderie, adding excitement to the game.

Step Putt

  • Definition: A “step putt” in disc golf involves taking a step toward the basket while putting, combining elements of stationary and jump putting for added power and control over longer distances. By transferring energy from the lower body, players achieve longer and more accurate putts, commonly used when the distance exceeds comfortable putting range but remains manageable.

Straddle Putt

  • Definition: A “straddle putt” in disc golf involves a wide stance perpendicular to the line of play. Unlike traditional stances, it offers adjustability for obstacles or preferences. By spreading their feet, players gain balance and stability, useful on uneven terrain or obstructed lines. It’s favored for putts around obstacles blocking a direct line to the basket.

Strong Side (of Basket)

  • Definition: The “strong side” of the basket in disc golf is where the disc’s spin aids its chances of staying in upon impact. For right-handed backhand throws, it’s usually the right side, as clockwise spin helps it catch the chains effectively. Left-handed backhand players aim for the left side. Players target the strong side when putting to increase successful putts, relying on disc rotation to secure it.

Sweet Spot (of Basket)

  • Definition: The “sweet spot” of the basket in disc golf is where a disc has the highest chance of staying in upon impact. It’s the most effective area for successful putts. Players aim for this spot to maximize the disc’s probability of staying in the basket. Factors like angle, speed, and spin affect the disc’s interaction, demanding precise putting motions for consistent success.

T

TD (Tournament Director)

  • Definition: A “Tournament Director” (TD) in disc golf organizes and oversees tournaments, ensuring smooth operation and rule compliance. Responsibilities include logistics, registration, scheduling, rule enforcement, and scoring. TDs collaborate with various stakeholders to host successful events, contributing to the growth of the disc golf community through their leadership and organizational skills.

Tee Pad

  • Definition: A “tee pad” in disc golf is where players make their initial throws. Constructed from materials like concrete or rubber, they offer stability. Strategically positioned for optimal launch points, tee pads vary in size and shape, sometimes featuring amenities like signs. Maintaining tee pads ensures fair playing conditions.

Thumber

  • Definition: A “thumber” in disc golf is a throwing technique with an overhead grip and release, where the thumb is inside the disc’s rim. Similar to a tomahawk, it involves upward motion with clockwise rotation (for right-handed throwers). Thumbers navigate obstacles, offering shot versatility with controlled flights. Mastery requires practice and understanding of the disc’s flight.

Tomahawk

  • Definition: A “tomahawk” in disc golf is an overhead throwing technique resembling a tomahawk chop motion. Unlike backhand or forehand throws, it involves a vertical motion with the disc rotating horizontally or diagonally. Tomahawks achieve high trajectory flights, useful for navigating obstacles or maximizing distance, and require precision and timing.

Tree Love

  • Definition: “Tree love” in disc golf refers to the fortunate outcome when a thrown disc hits a tree or obstacle but continues favorably, redirecting closer to the target or clearing obstructed paths by ricocheting off branches. This phenomenon highlights how even errant throws can yield positive results through fortuitous deflections, adding an element of unpredictability to the game.

Tree-Jected (or Tree-Nied)

  • Definition: “Tree-jected” or “tree-nied” is a humorous term in disc golf for when a thrown disc hits a tree, abruptly stopping or changing direction. It describes how hitting a tree can hinder the disc’s progress or alter its course, leading to a less-than-ideal position. Such throws may result from shot misjudgments, lack of control, or the unpredictable nature of disc flight. Disc golfers often use humor to cope with these challenges.

Trilogy

  • Definition: “Trilogy” in disc golf refers to discs made by three Swedish companies: Latitude 64, Dynamic Discs, and Westside Discs. Together, they form the Trilogy brand, known for high-quality products catering to all skill levels. This alliance emphasizes excellence and community engagement, contributing to the sport’s global growth.

Turbo Putt (or Pizza Putt)

  • Definition: In disc golf, a “Turbo Putt,” also known as a “Pizza Putt,” is a unique putting technique for short-range accuracy. Holding the disc flat, the player tosses it with a spinning motion, similar to tossing pizza dough, for improved control and loft. While less common, it offers an alternative for navigating obstacles and maximizing scoring opportunities.

Turn (See ‘High-Speed Stability’)

  • Definition: In disc golf, “Turn” is a flight characteristic describing a disc’s tendency to veer right when thrown with a backhand (RHBH) throw. Represented as the third number in flight ratings, Turn quantifies this rightward movement during initial flight. Positive values indicate rightward turn, while negatives suggest leftward fade. Influenced by disc design and aerodynamics, Turn helps players anticipate and adjust for flight paths, optimizing performance.

Turnover Shot

  • Definition: A “Turnover Shot” in disc golf is a strategic throwing technique to execute controlled turnovers or anhyzer flights. Players use understable discs with precise angle control and power modulation. This shot navigates tight fairways, shapes shots around obstacles, or achieves greater distance, offering versatility in various scenarios.

Two on One

  • Definition: “Two on One” in disc golf is a casual practice where players take two throws from the first tee during non-competitive rounds. They play from the better of the two throws to improve their chances of a favorable lie and lower scores. This warm-up exercise promotes an enjoyable experience for players of all skill levels.

Two-Meter Rule

  • Definition: The “Two-Meter Rule” in disc golf penalizes players when their disc lands two or more meters above the playing surface, typically in a tree or elevated obstacle, adding a penalty stroke to their score. While optional and enforced differently, it aims to promote fair play and accuracy in disc placement by discouraging aiming for elevated positions to gain an advantage.

U

Understable

  • Definition: In disc golf, “Understable” refers to a disc’s flight characteristic indicating its tendency to turn right (for right-handed backhand throws) at high speeds. Understable discs, represented by a negative Turn value, veer off their initial line and curve right during flight, offering versatility for turnover shots and controlled flights.

Upshot (Approach)

  • Definition: An “Upshot,” or “Approach,” in disc golf is a shot aimed at landing the disc near the basket after the initial drive. Unlike drives focusing on distance, Upshots prioritize accuracy and control to set up easier putts, enhancing scoring opportunities and minimizing risk. Players utilize various techniques and disc selections to execute Upshots strategically.

W

Weak Side (of Basket)

  • Definition: The “Weak Side” in disc golf is where the disc’s spin decreases its chance of staying in the basket; players target the “Strong Side” for higher success rates, necessitating precision and accuracy to navigate effectively. Understanding and mastering the nuances of both sides enhance overall performance on the course.

Wing

  • Definition: In disc golf, the “Wing” denotes the outer rim of a disc, pivotal in determining its speed, stability, and flight. Wider Wings on distance drivers aid aerodynamics for greater velocity, while narrower Wings enhance control and accuracy on shorter throws. Understanding Wing characteristics aids in disc selection, optimizing performance across various shot types and course conditions.

#

10-meter circle

  • Definition: The 10-meter circle is a designated area around the basket in disc golf, typically marked on the ground. It determines how a player may putt. Inside this circle, a player must demonstrate balance after releasing the disc and cannot fall forward. This rule is designed to ensure fair play and skillful putting techniques. If no circle is painted on the course, it’s up to the group consensus to decide whether a disc is closer than 10 meters to the basket.

150 class

  • Definition: In disc golf, the 150 class refers to a category of discs that weigh less than 160 grams. These discs are typically lighter and may offer advantages such as increased glide or easier handling, particularly in certain weather conditions. In some countries, only 150 class discs are allowed for official play, adding a strategic element to disc selection and gameplay.

Author

  • Enzo S

    Welcome to Disc Flight Pro, your destination for expert disc golf insights. I'm Enzo S, a devoted disc golfer with a deep-rooted passion for the sport. My journey into the world of disc golf started in 2015, and over the years, I've honed my skills and knowledge. I'm here to share my experience and help you unlock your full disc golf potential.

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