Buzzzes, Drones, Wasps: Disc Golf Courses as Pollinator Paradise

By John Mola, PhD ~

Photo John Mola

Disc golfers are no strangers to wildlife and many of us identify deeply with the natural environments we play in. We enjoy the view from an elevated tee pad, the impressive stature of mature trees and the sound of buzzing bees. Manufacturers even name discs after mammals, fish, birds, insects and plants.

Continue reading “Buzzzes, Drones, Wasps: Disc Golf Courses as Pollinator Paradise”

What is Green Disc Golf, Anyway? A Guide to Eco-Friendly Discs.

By Chris Bawden ~

Cover art
Artwork by Chris McDowell.

Disc golf prides itself on being in touch with nature and treading lightly on the planet. It’s not surprising that eco-friendly discs have become a common offering across disc manufacturers. But what does eco-friendly disc golf mean and are eco-friendly discs worth throwing? Continue reading “What is Green Disc Golf, Anyway? A Guide to Eco-Friendly Discs.”

16 Disc Golf Professionals Make Statements on the Environment

By Josh Woods and Bill Newman ~

Cover art

Politics and disc golf simply do not mix.

Like gum and sweaters. Orange juice and toothpaste. McBeth and bogies. Some things just do not go together.

But is that really the case when it comes to the environment? When faced with matters of extreme environmental importance, should disc golfers leave their politics in the parking lot? Continue reading “16 Disc Golf Professionals Make Statements on the Environment”

Do Disc Golfers Lean Left on Environmental Issues?

By Josh Woods, PhD, Bill Newman and Vic Allen ~

Cover Photo Final
Photo Jesse Wright.

Environmentalists can be found in all major sports, but they seem especially common in outdoor activities that depend on a clean, sustainable environment.

For instance, as global warming has turned mountain snow to slush, snowboarding legends like Gretchen Bleiler and daredevil ice climbers like Will Gadd have been using their sport as a platform to raise awareness about climate change. With coral reefs declining and plastic waste amassing in the oceans, surfing gods like Kelly Slater are pitching in to clean things up. Continue reading “Do Disc Golfers Lean Left on Environmental Issues?”

The Biggest Environmental Worries in Disc Golf

By Josh Woods, PhD, and Bill Newman ~

Cover art

Henry David Thoreau wrote, “What’s the use of a disc golf course if you don’t have a decent planet to put it on?”

Okay, we may have tinkered with Mr. Thoreau’s quote, but surely his point holds up. Disc golf would not be much fun on a severely damaged planet. And you don’t need to be a famous naturalist to understand that the sport itself can harm the environment. Building disc golf courses often involves cutting down trees, disturbing animal habitats and attracting herds of players who trample the fields and sometimes leave their garbage behind. Continue reading “The Biggest Environmental Worries in Disc Golf”

Good Dirt: How Soil Compaction Could Affect the Future of Disc Golf

By Josh Woods ~

Cover art
Soil compaction and visible tree roots are common on popular disc golf courses. Photo Ronald Harkey.

Try this: Search google for “environmental impact.” In the results, you’ll quickly see that almost everything humans do affects the environment, and that many of these impacts have been carefully studied by scientists.

Research on disc golf’s influence on the environment is still developing, but there are at least two studies, published in peer-reviewed academic journals, that examine a little-known problem that is right beneath our feet. Continue reading “Good Dirt: How Soil Compaction Could Affect the Future of Disc Golf”

Three Reasons to Care about Disc Golf Research

By Josh Woods ~

Cover art

One of the questions you learn to answer in graduate school is, “Who cares?”

As you work through your research ideas, your teachers drum this question into you. For instance, after presenting your thesis proposal, someone in the audience might chirp: “Your project sounds interesting, but I’m not sure it passes the who-cares test.”

That’s as close as it gets to smack talk in academia.

As devilish as the question may be, it’s almost always worth answering. After all, if your research isn’t relevant to anyone, why carry it out? Continue reading “Three Reasons to Care about Disc Golf Research”