Slow learning and the hand-speed fairy

By Kingsley Flett ~

Paige
Paige Pierce driving on the uphill hole 13 at Mundaring DiscGolfPark in Western Australia during the Aussie Open in January 2017. Photo by Kingsley Flett.

A player who I was coaching received a visit from the hand-speed fairy the other day.

After getting used to the sight of her merely throwing the disc, I was taken aback by how suddenly her arm whipped around in a blur, and how the disc ejected from her hand with a crisp violence. Without her knowing it, her brain switched on more muscle fibers that power the throw while switching off the ones that decelerate it. The correct term for this is reciprocal inhibition, but I prefer ‘hand-speed fairy.’ Continue reading “Slow learning and the hand-speed fairy”

Two approaches to teaching disc golf

By Valarie Jenkins and Josh Woods ~

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Paul McBeth and Nate Sexton give an instructional clinic at the McBeast Challenge in Ocala, Florida (March 21, 2017). Photo by Brian Wells.

“Back in the weeds … great!”

Learning how to play disc golf can be frustrating. Searching for your disc in thorny underbrush while your friend taps in for birdie can test the patience of any disc golfer.

But then it happens: A breakthrough. The disc leaves your hand, glides along an intended path and lands near the basket. The sun peaks from the clouds. Birds chirp happily in the trees. You can breathe again. Okay, maybe you’ll play another round.

Moments of success keep disc golfers coming back for more. But where do they come from? How do disc golfers learn to play better? Continue reading “Two approaches to teaching disc golf”

“Wow, that hurt”: A look At The Injury Bug, And How To Avoid It

umbrella

Injuries can be rich learning experiences. When I was ten, for instance, I learned that leaping off a garage roof with a beach umbrella is pretty much the same thing as leaping off a garage roof without a beach umbrella.

Having sustained several flamboyantly unnecessary injuries, I probably shouldn’t be giving advice on how to avoid them. Still, my goal here is not to air my own wisdom, but rather to add to yours by cultivating some available resources. Continue reading ““Wow, that hurt”: A look At The Injury Bug, And How To Avoid It”

A guide to disc golf putting instruction on Youtube

Disc golf has developed, and quite successfully, without much help from large-scale institutions. In other words, most of us learn how to putt, use a mini, throw a sidearm and play in tournaments without assistance from mom and dad, without a school system, without a church, without ESPN or Nike, and without a widely-accepted set of social norms that direct the masses to play. Continue reading “A guide to disc golf putting instruction on Youtube”

Does stretching before disc golf reduce the chance of injury?

Imagine avoiding beer for decades only to learn, near the end of your life, that drinking three beers a day lowers blood pressure, benefits heart health, strengthens bones and generally prolongs life.

I recently had a similar, if less extreme, revelation while reading an academic journal article about disc golf injuries. Continue reading “Does stretching before disc golf reduce the chance of injury?”