Sep 282005
 
Authors: Ryan Fedel

Disk Golf is a sport growing in popularity across the nation due to its ease of play and low cost.

According to the Pro Disk Golf Association (PDGA) Web site, disk golf is played much like traditional golf. Instead of hitting a ball with clubs however, players throw flying disks towards a hole. In this case the hole is a large, elevated metal basket. The object of the game is the same as regular golf; to have the fewest number of strokes, or in this case throws, when the player's disk lands in the basket.

Bill Wright, owner of the Wright Life Sports and Flying Disc Store, 200 Linden St., believes the attraction to disk golf is similar to the attraction of traditional golf.

"It's exactly like ball golf, you play around for those couple good shots that you get," Wright said with a laugh. "It's the same type of addiction; you are challenging yourself each time you are out. You are trying to get a lower score, to try and drive farther, to try and putt better."

As opposed to traditional golf, which can get expensive, disk golf is considered low cost.

"It's extremely inexpensive to play compared to other sports out there," Wright said. "You can go out and buy one disk, or come in here and buy a used disk for $2 or $3, and have a good time."

Another major attraction to disk golf is anyone can do it. According to the PDGA Web site, school age kids all the way up to elderly individuals can play disc golf. Because disk golf is easy to learn and is easy on the body, almost anyone can play.

Disk golf is mainly seen as a recreational activity, however serious players can make it quite competitive.

"There are a lot of chances to take it to what ever level you want," Wright said. "You can have it at a completely recreational level where you just challenge yourself and go out and play for the fun of it, or you can take it to the most competitive level you can imagine. There are tournaments put on by the PDGA with substantial cash prizes."

It is important for disk golf players to remember that most courses are in public parks that are multiuse, so a lot of other things are going on around them. This is a key difference between disk golf and traditional golf.

"There are not barricades around it. We are not in just a disk golf area. We are in a public park so you pretty much have to watch out for people before you throw," Wright said.

The location of disk golf eventually will have to change, according to Wright. Areas that are devoted strictly to disk golf will be the hosts of new courses. This change will be necessary as the sport becomes more popular and players get better, throwing disks farther and harder than ever before.

"It has grown pretty much every year that it has existed," Wright said. "Just based on the growth of our sales and the growth of the number of new courses in the area, it is the fastest growing alternative or newer sport that is out there."

Fort Collins currently has one eighteen-hole disk golf course at Edora Park, 1420 E. Stuart St. The course is free to anyone who wants to play. No tee times are required, as with a traditional golf course, and the course is open year round.

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