In 1976, the Professional Disc Golf Association was organized. With it, came the patent of the new disc throwing sport and the accompanying chain entangled golf targets. Popping up all over the United States, disc golfing has become a rejuvenated phenomenon among teenagers, college students and young adults. For many, the chain like basket, found in recreation parks and fitness facilities around the country, is commonly mistaken as a piece of artwork or, worse yet, a trash can of some sort. However, for the disc golf enthusiasts, these goals speak volumes in tradition and competition. So, what is disc golf?
Similar to the stroke count of club styled golf, disc golf is played on a terrain of land and involves skill similar to that of regular ball golf. With chain structured goals strategically placed throughout the course, disc golf offers a new level of challenge to traditional ball golf in that discs, instead of balls, are hand thrown into baskets. As with ball golf, each throw of the disc is counted as a stroke with the goal of the game to finish with the least number of strokes.
Played in teams of any varying number, disc golf is an individual game of challenge and not necessarily a team sport although it can be developed into a team sport similar to the methods used in regular ball golf. Each player is required to toss the disc into the chain basket, without landing the disc on top of it, to earn the goal.
As with ball golf, or any other coordinated sporting event, disc golf offers competitions throughout the country, tournaments and a selection of disc golf attire, bags, discs and memorabilia. Unlike ball golf, the “driving range” for disc golf can be created in your own back yard through the purchase of a pole hole, also known as “the goal”. The purchase of the pole hole can range from $130 to $400 depending on the style selected. The pole hole is versatile and can be moved throughout a backyard for “at home” disc golf competition at any level of play or for simple practice.
Many public parks offer disc golf ranges. For a list of parks, visit your local parks and recreation website for details. Additionally, disc golf, like ball golf, offers alternative game selections such as The Target Game which limits the number of discs thrown and the distance in which they are thrown, Around Nine Game which involves one opportunity to throw the disc from nine different points and the Discshoes Game involving rules similar to that of horseshoes with distances varying and four personal discs used by each player.
For the traditional club golfing enthusiast, disc golf offers a great, and less expensive, alternative to the green fees associated with club golf fees. With most public parks offering disc golf terrain, the cost to play is nothing more than the basic equipment involved, discs and poles.