I have often said to new disc golfers “Once you hear those chains, it’s over.” Disc golf has a strange ability to turn any newby into a crazed disc golf addict with only one or two rounds.
But it is not only the chains that bring us back again and again. It is chasing that perfect flight. Hitting that extra long putt. And of course the ultimate win for any disc golfer, hearing those chains ring from the tee pad.
In a way, disc golf is a lot like surfing. There is a certain spiritual “flow” to the game that brings disc golfers out to the course day after day. Just like surfers spend their lives chasing a ride on the perfect wave, we go from course to course and disc to disc chasing that perfect flight. And when it happens, when that disc is in the air taking the flight path it was intended for, time seems to slow down. For some reason we get a mild high from this.
For those few seconds, time stands still, and all that matters in the world is a spinning disc in the wind. Everything in our mind is at peace and when the disc lands, we want to do it all over again.
Disc golf brings our mind into the moment. If our mind is anywhere other than on the course, we know it hurts our game. On the course, with practice, we become able to focus on what is important – putting this disc in that basket. How often though do we walk around from day to day like a zombie thinking about everything else but being in the moment? And what can disc golf teach us about how this not only hurts our game but who we are off the course. We know that half heartedly lobbing a disc somewhat toward the basket only costs us strokes. We take time on the course to prepare our focus and our shots, carefully planning and eliminating distractions. What are we doing off of the course the prepare our focus, to be in the moment, and not simply lobbing ourselves at other important tasks?
Chasing that perfect flight is about being in the moment and bearing witness to the amazing things you can accomplish. It is finding “flow” in all that you do. It is becoming an active part in your game and your life instead of just a spectator.
– Author of Zen & The Art of Disc Golf
– Host of The Zen Disc Golf Podcast
Image by @franksandtanks on IG