If you are new to the sport of disc golf or if you are a veteran of our beloved game, please spend a few moments to read and understand some of the top things that really ANNOY and bug disc golfers while playing. I compiled the list by actually listening to players conversations. It doesn’t take long for a disc golfer to share their passion on these things and this is not meant to be the “ultimate” list, but it is meant to enlighten, educate, and humor those who play our sport.
If you fall into one of these listed items, I am sure your friends and other players have spoken to you, or about it to you, at one time or the other. Let’s start at #10 and read to #1 and then let the conversation and highlights begin… (I welcome your feedback below)
10. PLAYERS WHO REFUSE TO “PLAY THROUGH”
It’s as simple as you read it: Players who refuse to “play through” (see terminology section). These are players who catch up to your card, they do not care to play through, and yet catch up on you every hole with an attitude; never accepting the offer/request to “play through.” It does happen, and if it applies to you, don’t get flustered; after all, the group did offer you the opportunity.
9. “PLAY THROUGH” THROWERS
If you enter a situation that you are allowed to play through a person or group in front of you, be considerate and DO NOT throw multiple drives or more than one disc on the hole. When you do this it’s like a slight-of-hand trick to the people who just let you pass. Sure, they may not care, but many do. Now you are going just as slow playing your multiple shots as if you were still behind the group.
8. GROUPS NOT ALLOWING A “PLAY THROUGH”
Sometimes these are the most annoying to a single disc golfer on a busy course day. There will be some large groups that will not let you simply play through and yet you catch up to them on every hole. (sometimes they get offended each time you may have asked) Unless you are in tournament or other very specific situation, let the single and double players pass, in most situations, they would have let you do it if you were asking as well.
7. THE TAKERS THAT DO NOT GIVE BACK
Each local course has them, the players who regularly play, but do not take the time to volunteer or help out on “work days” (big or small) or provide the needed support to those who do. Honestly, those who help maintain courses are not asking for hundreds of volunteer hours from it’s volunteers, just some consistent help. Donate supplies to the volunteer days, pick up trash while you play, coordinate the events, communicate the message, attend city meetings to defend or promote disc golf. Additionally, if you don’t volunteer to help, you lose your credentials to gripe about how “bad” things may be.
6. GENERAL RESPONSIBILITY
I have seen this at least once a weekend at almost every course I visit. People need to take responsibility for pets, kids, their friends, and non-playing persons that are with them. This is a greatly implied courtesy for EVERYONE at the course, it controls any safety concerns and lets everyone enjoy the day.
Pets Be considerate of your pets running, barking, and agitating people on the course and tee box.
Kids Ensure kids are cleared of dangers from discs, throwers and pets. Also, please do not let them pull discs from someone else’s bags and lastly, NO LITTERING etc. (Kids learn by example, teach them well)
Friends Friends of players can be the worst sometimes, after all, the way you play together may be different than playing with others, so please show respect. The loud music, brash talk, and kicking of bags may not be cool around those you are currently playing with or around, so just look at it objectively (not personally) and still have fun.
Non-Playing Persons I see this often as a “gallery” of people following or just hanging out with a player. Please remember that this is not a time for them to talk loudly on a cell phone, climb trees for fun, or be involved in some other activity to the point it could be done OFF of the course. After all, were they there with you to watch, play, and learn or just do other things to annoy everyone?
5. THOSE WHO DO NOT RESPECT RULES
Pay To Play Respect the rules and pay. I see this from time to time and correct people and even pay for a few. The rules were established for the overall goal of course maintenance, municipal agreements, etc. (If it is a “donation” box that’s different) Most fees are minimal. Municipal courses have police patrols that will ticket you, so unless you like to spend a day in court, miss work, and pay a large sum of money; that $1 course fee is a wiser choice. If it is on PRIVATE property, that owner can press charges for theft. So just PAY AND PLAY.
Large Groups There is no law that tells you what to limit your disc golf “herd” (see terminology section) to, but some courses do have rules posted for courtesy asking that you keep your groups smaller. Do your best to abide or at least be considerate with others to play through if you are larger in numbers and slower than the rest.
Weather Bans Some courses simply need to restrict usage to protect the environment and course beauty; plus, your safety is in mind. If they have it closed or restricted, don’t violate the guidelines. You make disc golf look bad in the community, worst, you could be the final cause to “why” a course closes. You make it damaging to the course if you don’t respect their request. KNOW THE RULES, RESPECT THE REASONS.
General Bans Substance use, alcohol, glass, music ordinances, types of trash, etc. These have been put in place for a reason and I know the sense of independence from disc golfers is strong. If you get busted, don’t fuss or cause a scene. Accept the fate and still remember to be great steward of the sport and abide by the rules/consequences.
4. ANIMAL WASTE (Packaged Or Not)
I really appreciate bringing my old “Ranger” dog onto the course with me, but I also bring with me bags and wrappers for his waste AND an additional bag to put it in until I reach a receptacle to throw it away in.
No one needs to find their disc hyzer planted as a “tombstone” into Fido’s stool sample. What’s worst? You learn that your disc gently landed directly on top of a steam pile, you unsuspectingly pick it up and place it in your bag. Yep, you gotta finish the round before you get to wash that bag out. Frustrating. FIDO DROPS IT, YOU BAG IT, YOU REMOVE IT.
3. VANDALISM (On A “PUBLIC” Course)
This one has caused MANY debates with regular players and infrequent players of our sport. People make an Ace, have a slang term, drug habit of choice, or obscenity and they feel they need to deface the basket, tee sign, tee box, benches or other amenities to tell the world about it. DON’T DO IT!
The key term here is PUBLIC course, not PRIVATE course, and it is classified as a criminal activity and it is vandalism. You are defacing a public property sponsored by tax payers and donors. Just as you couldn’t legally write your name on City Hall just because of your first visit, so why do it on our disc golf course. NO ONE CARES EXCEPT YOU.
If you make a monumental moment in your disc golf life, like an Ace, write on YOUR disc and not the PUBLIC basket. Those of us who work hard to maintain courses and get baskets installed do not wish to see them all tagged with your inane grasp of the modern language. It does not bode well for the course and it is illegal. If I read your name, I don’t remember that you Aced the shot, myself and the almost maximum majority just know that you ruined our course.
~ Additional thought ~ this goes for your business/group/club stickers as well. I am playing disc golf, not reading little billboards of advertisement to decide if I should buy your product. A plausible exception for this would be if that business/group/club was a key sponsor of the course, hole, amenity, etc.
2. TRASH AND LITTER ON THE COURSE
This is a NO BRAINER in my book. On most courses you CANNOT blame vagrants and school kids.
Sure in some of the frequent areas like trails and benches, everyone could be suspect of the crime, but who else would be deep in the woods in an area where, low and behold, you find beer cans, energy drinks, cigarette butts, and trail mix wrappers on the ground at a tee box? It seems that only disc golfers make it there to taint the beauty of the landscape. PACK IT IN, PACK IT OUT.
I think most everyone can agree on this. These are the people who steal baskets, take park amenities, steal donations/pay boxes, and even take other players discs directly from the courses (even while in play!). There is simply no room for it. Disc golfers in general are a very socially acceptable group, if you need something, someone is always willing to give it to you, get it to you, work it out for you, or share it with you. There is NO NEED TO STEAL FROM THE COURSES… LET THE BASKETS SERVE THE COURSE (not you)!
AND THERE YOU HAVE IT!! The “Top 10 Things That Disc Golfers Do (that really ANNOY other disc golfers)“… so stop your reading and get to throwing… see you on the course and remember to Grow The Sport and Play It Forward.