By: Scott Janczak A Brief Introduction: Disc Golf Disc golf is played much like traditional golf. Instead of a ball and clubs, however, players use a flying disc, or Frisbee. The sport was formalized in the 1970's, and shares with "ball golf" the object of completing each hole in the fewest number of strokes (or, in the case of disc golf, fewest number of throws). A golf disc is thrown from a tee area to a target which is the "hole". the hole can be one of a number of disc golf targets; the most common is called a Pole Hole, an elevated metal basket. As a player progresses down the fairway, he or she must make each consecutive shot from the spot where the previous throw has landed. There are a number of different throws in disc golf, but the most effective, yet most difficult shot so the forehand flick. The forehand flick provides the thrower with great distance if thrown correctly and enables the thrower to manipulate the disc around many obstructive objects such as trees, ponds, and other various terrains. Through this task analysis I will explain how to properly execute the forehand flick Disc Golf – The Sub skills Forehand flick - A forehand flick is the most effective way to move your disc down the course. The “flick” allows the throw to manipulate the angle of the release point of the disc to maneuver the disc around many obstacles the frolfer my encounter on a course. Backhand - A backhand is another very effective way to move the disc down the course, although the backhand does not provide the distance a forehand flick does, it does present the frolfer with much more accuracy. Push Putt – A push putt is one of many ways to make a putt in disc golf. The other options the frolfer has is using a backhand or flick shot, but the push putt provides the most amount of accuracy. Hammer - A hammer throw is an over handed throw that begins behind a player's head and finishes over the top of the head, giving the throw a high, arcing trajectory. This shot is best used to throw over obstacles like trees or bushes, or out of dense foliage. Disc Golf – Forehand Flick A forehand flick is the most effective way to matriculate your disc down the fairway and into the basket. The flick can be rather difficult to learn, but once it is mastered, it can remarkably improve your game. The flick can be thrown at a slight angle to either have it fade left or right or flat so it will go straight, the angle of the disc upon release should be dependent on the terrain of the course you are playing. Disc Golf – Breaking Down the Skill Learn the grip. A forehand grip in disc golf is similar to the forehand grip for throwing a normal Frisbee. Place your middle and index fingers along the bottom rim of the disc, and use your thumb to clamp down on the top of the disc. These three fingers will end up in a grip resembling that used to hold a pen, but your palm should face upward so that the top of the disc is level with the ground. Your grip should be firm. Place your left foot forward if you are throwing right-handed, vise versa if you are left handed. Bring your arm and wrist back, perpendicular from your body. This is your backswing. Power your arm forward from your elbow to begin your throw. Learn the form. Unlike backhand drives, forehand drives do not require any special run up, wind up or body rotation to be effective. Some will find a short run up will give them more confidence in their throw. Another approach is to take a single step before the throw. It can even be effective to stand with planted feet and throw. In all cases, the player should align his body in the direction he wants to throw, and keep his eyes focused on his desired flight path throughout the throwing motion. Experiment with each approach to determine which works best for you. Disc Golf – Breaking Down the Skill cont…… Practice the release. With a forehand throw, power is generated by the pressure exerted by the middle and index fingers pushing the bottom rim of the disc forward. You should begin the throwing motion by reaching the disc behind yourself while pointing your opposite shoulder towards the target, and finish by quickly pulling the disc forward along the side of your body, exerting as much pressure into the disc with the middle and index fingers as possible. As the disc reaches the end of the throwing motion, quickly flicking the wrist can add additional power and spin before it releases from your hand. When releasing the disc, concentrate on keeping it level to the ground, which will make your throws fly straighter and farther. Follow through with your arm, this will ensure a smooth, controlled throw. Bring your arm across your body at an upward angle during your throw to get your disc higher in the air. With practice, you can get the disc to roll on its edge after it lands. Disc Golf – Difficult Skills The Most difficult aspect of learning the forehand flick is throwing it straight and flat. Many people when first learning the forehand flick try to throw the disc with to much power, which in turn causes them to lose their form and they end up releasing the disc at an angle and the disc will fly straight into the ground. A major comparison between disc golf and “regular” golf is the importance of the form to execute a shot correctly. If you don’t master the form of throwing a forehand flick, you will never see positive results. Disc Golf – Modifying the Difficult Skills An easy way to correct yourself from “over powering” your flick shot is to keep your feet stationary. Instead of worrying about your feet and your arm motion all at the same time, focus only on your arm bringing the disc forward and snapping the disc with your wrist. Another way to help you throw with more accuracy is take the feet and arm motion out of the throw. Stand with your feet stationary, keep your arm bent 90 degrees slightly in front of your hips and just snap the disc forward with your wrist. This will allow you the opportunity to learn the snapping feeling with the disc, then slowly incorporate he arm, then feet to complete the entire motion. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Grip A forehand grip in disc golf is similar to the forehand grip for throwing a normal Frisbee. Place your middle and index fingers along the bottom rim of the disc, and use your thumb to clamp down on the top of the disc. These three fingers will end up in a grip resembling that used to hold a pen, but your palm should face upward so that the top of the disc is level with the ground. Your grip should be firm. It is important to put the pad of your finger(s) against the inside vertical wall of the disc's rim for maximum power. Squeeze the rim between your thumb and the "fist" knuckle of your index finger. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Begin by keeping your arm at a 90 degree angle with the disc parallel to your ear. Take a small step forward with your dominate foot while your non throwing should is pointing towards the target, very similar to throwing a pitch in baseball Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Then your left foot steps forward and turns toward the target, as your weight begins to move forward. Your hips lead your body rotation followed by your shoulders pulling your bent arm, elbow first. Your weight transfers to your front foot which has planted, pointed toward the target. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Continue rotating your hips towards the target and pulling your non throwing arm into your body. Keep your arm still, allow the rotation of your arm to naturally pull your arm forward. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Your hips should continue pulling your shoulder and arm. The arm straightens, then your wrist and fingers stop abruptly and stiffen, forcing the ejection of the disc. Your back heel must lift to accommodate complete rotation. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Your shoulders continue to rotate, and your weight continues forward. Your back foot may come all the way off the tee pad as your front foot rotates to take the stress off your knee. Task Analysis – Forehand Flick Continue your follow through allowing your body to complete the motion and alleviating any stress that may be on your body.