Actually, it’s been years since I tried to play a round of golf that involved using more than just a putter, so I don’t know if it’s actually better. All I know is that in disc golf, the learning curve is not as steep as regular golf. Most people have thrown a frisbee at one time or another, and some pick up on the key concepts (throwing it straight, throwing it far) very quickly.
For me, disc golf has become a time-consuming activity this summer since my friend Tye introduced it to me last month. I find myself wanting to go to the disc golf course more than I want to play NCAA Football 07, which is remarkable for me. It’s nice to be outdoors, even if it doesn’t really exercise anything other than your arm. Apparently, there’s a course in Searcy, too, though I’ve heard it’s basically out in the open. I prefer the wooded area of “The Sinks” in Chattanooga for a bit of a challenge. It’s not a long course, but it’s interesting because of the natural sinkholes that dot the landscape. The course is less than a hundred yards from the Tennessee River near the Chickamauga Dam.
Of course, I had to take this newfound hobby to the nerdiest possible level, so I created an Excel file to track my progress. I have a system that adjusts the course difficulty based on the pin positions for that round (each hole has 2-3 possible positions for the pin). The file even has my own version of a handicap calculator.
Occasionally, I’ll try to post updates on how I’m doing with my disc golf game. Right now I’m throwing an Innova Star Sidewinder for most of my drives. It naturally curves to the right at high speeds, canceling out my usual leftward arc. I’ve been throwing almost exclusively backhand throws (typical throwing motion), but I’m working on my forehand so I can get some more power. The other discs (all Innova brand) I typically use are a Champion Leopard, a DX Wolf, and a Star Aviar putter.
Right now, I have tentative plans to visit the Searcy/Little Rock area on Labor Day weekend (we actually get that as a holiday at UTC), so I’ll probably play some of the area courses while I’m there. There’s also a course at Cloudland Canyon State Park in Georgia, which is less than an hour away from where I live in Chattanooga. Right now, though, I’ve only played “The Sinks,” which from what I understand is a unique course.
For a list or map of nearby courses, try these links:
PDGA Course Directory (yes, there are professional disc golfers)
Google Maps disc golf directory