A Beginner’s Guide to Disc Golf

by | Oct 21, 2022 | Disc Golf

All you need to get started is “a disc, your water bottle and your shoes,” Mr. Voss said. A starter set of discs — which includes a putter for short distances, a driver for long distances, and a midrange for everything in between — runs about $20. The putter, the slowest-flying disc, has a deep and rounded rim, while a midrange is wider with a narrow rim, which makes it glide longer than a putter. Drivers are the most aerodynamic, with a flat, sharp edge that helps them hold a high speed for longer.

If you buy only one disc, make it the putter, said Melba Seto, 37, who mentors new disc golfers in Calgary, Alberta, and teaches clinics for the Women’s Disc Golf League. That’s because it’s the easiest way to assess your technique. “Putters are meant to fly straight. If it’s not going straight, you’re doing something wrong,” Ms. Seto said. “Until you can consistently throw a putter, don’t worry about all the other discs. Just master that.”

While disc golf has always been “a little alternative,” Mr. Voss said, its days of being grouped with “hippie hobbies” like hacky sack feel numbered, as professional players accrue both athletic acclaim and sky-high salaries. The current U.S. disc golf champion, Paul McBeth, signed a $10 million endorsement deal last year.

Still, having a reputation as a laid-back, unpretentious sport has its upsides, Mr. Voss said, including “the chance to be more welcoming.” In fact, a huge part of disc golf’s appeal is that “it’s accessible to almost anybody,” said Ms. Seto, who has played with people in wheelchairs (many courses are flat), coached players with limited mobility and squeezed in a round at her favorite course a few days before giving birth.

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