BASIC DISC GOLF THROWS
While a proficient disc golfer only needs to master putting and either a backhand or forehand, mastering all three will take your game to the next level. Below are a few How to Disc Golf videos for beginners which are among many more available on YouTube.
Putting (throwing your disc into the basket from a short distance) is one of the most important skills to master in disc golf since you usually have to putt on every hole. The main putting styles are listed below.
Use spin to stabilize your putting line.
Throw your putter with as little spin as possible to keep the putter flight pure and on a straight line.
Throw your putter overhand while supporting it with your thumb underneath the middle of the flight plate and fingers along the rim. Useful for putting over obstacles.
If you are putting from more than 10 meters / 30 feet away from the basket, you can jump towards the basket and release your disc before your feet touch the ground.
A backhand is thrown by reaching your throwing hand across your body and pulling it to the other side of your body where you release the disc when your arm is fully extended. A backhand throw has a higher distance potential than a forehand because a backhand throw engages the whole body while a forehand throw is primarily in the wrist and arm. A proper backhand technique can be broken down into six parts.
When it comes to throwing technique, grip plays a crucial role. The way you hold the disc determines its release timing and direction. If you hold it too tightly, the disc may be released late and go off course. Conversely, if you hold it too loosely, it could slip out and go in the wrong direction. Strive for a balanced grip that is just right - not too tight nor too loose.
To maximize throwing power, focus on proper hip rotation. Strive to rotate your hips as much as possible while maintaining balance. This will generate greater overall power and velocity in your throws.
Ensure you fully extend your arm and rotate your hips for maximum reach back. This will generate more power, momentum, and velocity during the throw.
Focus on your disc, not the target. This allows for maximum hip rotation, leading to increased velocity and distance.
To maintain a straight line trajectory, begin your throwing motion with your elbow out front while keeping the disc close to your chest. This provides maximum control and velocity.
To maximize your disc velocity, allow your arm and your body to continue through the throwing motion in the direction of the throw. Not following through increases the chance of injury because your body is forced to stop its momentum.
A forehand is thrown when a player throws a disc using a sidearm throwing motion which looks similar to how a sidearm baseball pitcher would throw a ball or how you would skip rocks on water. Having a forehand allows you to look at your target and gaps when throwing tight lines.
Once you have mastered throwing with a flat release (the disc is released with its plate (the circular flat part of the disc) parallel to the ground) so your discs fly straight, you can learn to throw them with different angles of release. These more advanced throws use variations of the backhand and forehand to get your disc around, over and under obstacles. Below are some of the main variations.
Note that how a disc flies for each shot depends on whether the disc is thrown backhand or forehand by a right handed player or a left handed player. The flight path of a disc thrown with a Right Hand Backhand (RHBH) throw or a Left Hand Forehand (LHFH) throw should be similar. The flight path of a disc thrown with a Right Hand Forehand (RHFH) throw or a Left Hand Backhand (LHBH) throw should be similar.
Hyzer and Anhyzer refer to the angle of a disc at release.
A hyzer is thrown when a disc is released with the outside edge of the disc tilted downward and the top of the disc angled away from a RHBH / LHFH thrower; the disc will tend to fade hard to the left.
An anhyzer is thrown when a disc is released with the outside edge of the disc tilted upward and the top of the disc angled towards a RHBH / LHFH thrower; the disc will tend to turn to the right and finish by fading left.
A turnover shot is thrown when you get the disc to curve in the direction opposite of its fade. A RHBH / LHFH thrower would want the disc to keep turning right; a RHFH / LHBH would want the disc to keep turning left.
A roller is thrown when your thrown disc completely turns to its side, falls to the ground and starts rolling.
A S-Shot is thrown when the disc's flight path resembles the shape of the letter 'S' or a backwards 'S'. For example, a s-shot results when an understable disc is released flat, curves to the right and then back to the left for a RHBH thrower.
A hyzer flip is thrown when a disc is released on a hyzer angle, turns (flips) over to to the right and then back to the left for a RHBH thrower.
A flex shot is thrown when an overstable disc is released on an anhyzer angle, curves to the right and then back to the left for a RHBH thrower.
A tomahawk is thrown when a player holds a disc with a thumb on the top of the disc and with an index and middle finger on the inside ring of the disc. brings it over the shoulder and throws it over the head using an overhand throwing motion.
A thumber is thrown when a player holds a disc with a thumb on the inside ring of the disc and throws it using an overhand throwing motion similar to how a person would throw a baseball.