Poll 22: Throwing form

Have you ever noticed how repetitive sports are when playing them?

There are so many technical parts to a game that make it like that. Whether it be throwing, catching, swinging or whatever else, the motions and way to do things — and do them correctly — are repetitive.

It’s not to say it’s a bad thing. The repetitiveness nature of things is what makes someone better or worse than another.

Take, for example, baseball pitching.

A pitcher has several ways they can throw — overhand, 3/4 or sidearm. Some even go to a submarine style of throwing. But they stay with that in a predominate way, thus making it so their motion and such is what they do over and over.

Disc golf is no different. And part of that is something to keep in mind when we discuss this week’s poll question.

Before that, however, let’s go back to last week’s poll, when we asked you how you were introduced to the game.

Often, our poll questions come from the other writers on this site. Jack Trageser said he was curious about what people would say in response to this poll and even said he’d guess that the majority of people would vote the options of being introduced by a friend or seeing it being played would be the two top choices.

He was half right.

Of the 81 people who voted, friend was the overwhelming winner with 54 votes (67 percent). But the second top choice was “other,” which drew 19 votes (23 percent).

That shocked me a little because I thought we had covered the main things, but many seem to be introduced to the game in a different way.

Saw it being played placed third with eight votes (10 percent). Media-related and school programs each received no votes.

Let’s see what some of the readers had to say.

Keith said:

It was 1994. I was a freshman in high school and my school friend (he was only a friend inside school) brought in some discs. I asked what it was he said “FROLF.” We went after school and I was hooked ever since.

It’s interesting to see the wording, too, of how people were introduced. Ahhh, Frolf!

Brad H. says:

We used to play lazer tag in the cemetery behind a friends house at night. Then during the days we started playing Frisbee golf. And even though we kept an eye on the cemetery, righting headstones that had been vandalized and such, we were nicely (we were on good terms with the cops, reporting vandalism and such) told not to play there. We moved to a local park and played object golf. I still remember seeing my first real DG disc in about 87. Even though I only play occasionally, most of my friends from that time are serious (golfers) in Portland.

To link lazer tag to disc golf!

Mike Wilson said:

My wife thought it would be something fun to do with the kids. So we played a couple times at the end of the summer. Then like a ton of bricks it hit! I played the next spring and was bitten by the bug! Now I play as much as I possibly can. Thou I’m still learning and just changed my grip. I’m doing OK but striving to get A LOT better!

It seems a lot of people get bitten by the bug when they first start!

Kirk Maddox said:

I grew up throwing Frisbees on the beach. On my oldest daughter’s birthday in 2008, I was driving home from work. I was passing by the church where I play drums and saw 4 youth on the church grounds throwing colorful “Frisbees” but not to each other! They were throwing at trees, signs, etc. I stopped and asked them what the heck they were doing and they told me about disc golf. I bought my first basic set that day! I went Pro a year ago. All this time growing up with Frisbees, I never knew there was a real sport until that day.

I know that feeling. I saw baskets several times in parks and somewhat had heard of it, but never knew a thing until the time a friend brought me to play.

Many of the responses we got for this poll were a little longer to put here, so I would definitely encourage you all to check out what others said. I didn’t see a lot of “other” ways introduced to the game, so I’d definitely like to hear more of those stories!

Back to this week’s poll.

Originally, I had mentioned repetitiveness and the reason I did that was because this week’s poll is about throwing form.

Though I realize that many people have different shots they use, it seems that players utilize one of three forms as their “main” form — backhand, overhand or sidearm.

As a softball player, I’m slowly working on making overhand the shot I used the majority of the time, but currently usually use a backhand. I know others who will shoot sidearm (or flick) nearly 90 percent of the time.

So how about you? Which is your main form?

Drop us some comments, too. Let us know why you throw the way you do and if you have ever thought about switching your main form?

[poll id=”26″]

Note: As much as I hate to do this, we’re going to skip the weekly giveaways for a little while.

If you have any comments, questions, thoughts, ideas or anything else, feel free to e-mail me and the crew at: pj [at] rattlingchains.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook!


0 thoughts on “Poll 22: Throwing form

  1. I throw pretty much exclusively backhand. Each year, I tell myself “this season, I’m going to develop a flick” and then never do, for whatever reason.

    It’s funny too, because I grew up playing baseball for like 12 years, but can’t figure out a forearm shot. My shoulder somehow can’t move like that anymore.


  2. I go with the backhand MOST of the time. My anhyzer throws on longer shots (especially in the woods) are pretty unpredictable though and that’s when I go with the forehand. So to sum it up, I usually let the course dictate how I throw.


  3. I am for sure predominantly backhanded. I use the sidearm when I can’t get there any other way. I have a couple overstable discs that will turn right when I throw them hard enough. If I have enough room to toss a backhand that is what I will toss. I know my limitations with the sidearm but I use them for shots less than 325 feet when I need to.


  4. I mainly throw backhand, but I throw whatever the hole calls for or favors the most. I look at developing all throwing styles, not only to be a better all-around golfer, but it is easier to select the highest percentage shot when you step up to the tee.


  5. I started with side-arm because I had better distance than backhand. By the end of the second season I started reading throwing techniques. I switch to backhand with more distance and better accuracy. My side-arm shots still have a habit of being too low or high.


  6. I’m a backhand dominant player, my brother is a sidearm dominant player. We started at the same time, I found more videos on how to excel in backhand. He just liked sidearm better. When looking for sidearm videos, not one is the exact same.

    Overhead is something I’ve been using for getting out of rough shots. I’m learning that it’s such a good utility even when driving. I’m working it in on certain holes so I’ll be a better all around player 😀


  7. Since I played baseball through high school, when I was introduced to disc golf my freshman year of college (grad student now) I found forehand a much more natural and comfortable motion than backhand. I always got much better distance and accuracy throwing forehand, and only ever threw backhand for approaches/putts. This past summer I decided to really try and learn to throw backhand, and it has been a great experience. Being able to throw both ways effectively is a great feeling.


  8. For mid range/approach shots I always throw backhand, but for drives I’m about equally capable with backhand and forehand throws. I can throw equally far with both throws, and usually base my decision based on which direction I want my disc to flow.

    If it’s a totally straight wide open drive, then it depends on the day. Some days I feel like I’ll get more distance with a backhand throw, sometimes I’m feeling my forehand. Being able to throw both backhand and forehand has huge advantages for getting your disc where you want it to land.


  9. Different throws are important. Different grips are important. Being able to throw clockwise and counterclockwise really helps. At the least, being able to curve the disc left and right is essential. Having spent decades playing Ultimate I can throw with both hands using over 30 grips. That counts a grip different if it is with a different hand and upside down different than right side up.

    Most sports have the repetitive motions down to a science. One key to ball golf is having a smooth repeatable swing. Disc Golf is too new for that. As mentioned above, there seems to be consensus about the best way to throw backhand, but forehand has a million variations. And overhand is just beginning to see it’s potential. That’s part of the excitement of disc golf. Any day now someone may come up with a completely new throw, grip or better, method that allows everyone to throw accurately 300 feet!


  10. I started throwing forehand with discs when I eventually got a hold of one (in Australia thats a hard thing). Mainly because it was different to the normal throwing style that I’d seen most people do. Then my squash training kicked in, and found it directly correlated to the forehand technique, footwork, arm position cocking the wrist ect. Throwing around the 300 foot mark without too much effort.

    2 months later, Dave Feldberg was in Sydney doing a clinic, and said ‘you’ve got such a big wing span, don’t bother with forehand’. Who was I to argue with the then world no1, so after an hour or so of getting some technique, I stuck at it. Pretty much my forehand has fallen away dramatically since.

    As a side note I had struggled with tennis elbow whilst throwing forehand, changing to backhand completely stopped that.


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