This is the start of a series where we profile stereotypical members of your disc golf group, we’ll give you six for now. It is amazing how similar dynamics can be in random groups of people of all ages across the country. We think these individuals are not unique to our group, some of them don’t even exist it our group (yet) but we know they are out there, let us know if you agree.
Okay, this one is cheating because there is one of these in every group for every sport ever played. The positive side of Roy comes out when you have legitimate rule questions and he’s there to answer. The negative side comes when you lean forward on an 8m putt: “You must maintain balance on any putts inside the circle!” His favorite line, if you should happen to get in his group during tournament play, is “I wouldn’t call you out on it, but somebody else might point out that you just broke rule number…”
I forget exactly how the saying goes, but to paraphrase: Anytime somebody starts a sentence with “I don’t mean to be rude…” they immediately follow it up by being extremely rude. That’s Roy. “I wouldn’t have you take a stroke penalty for taking an opponent’s disc out of the basket and throwing it to him, but I’ve got the scorecard and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.”
His worst victim is the poor first time tournament player who gets put in his group. Roy thinks he is being helpful by pointing out every infraction but by the 3rd hole and 7th infraction it obvious to everyone except Roy that he is just annoying the entire group.
How Often Is Quirk Valuable: At most once a round.
Does He Slow Down Play: Only if he somehow doesn’t know a rule and has to look it up in his pocket PDGA rulebook he carries on him at all times.
Skill Level In Group: Not as good as he thinks he is.
The Deep Thinker
His head is in the right place by considering all options, but he clearly doesn’t need to take five practice swings with four different swing types before making his decision. It isn’t coincidence that his best results often come when he makes a quick decision. Then again, once or twice a round he’ll pull off a crazy shot you never would have thought of which makes you understand why he goes through the process.
This player is about middle of the pack in your group. If he were much better he wouldn’t spend as much time considering every possible throwing style before each shot. If he were much worse he wouldn’t have many throwing styles to choose from and wouldn’t care enough to think about his options.
How Often Is Quirk Valuable: A couple of times a round in doubles
Does He Slow Down Play: Only until the rest of the group learns his habits and know everybody else has time to throw while he checks the wind.
Skill Level In Group: Average
There has to be an opposite to The Deep Thinker. This player isn’t very good, which is fine because he plays fast, but is frustrating to watch because he never tries to use imagination and often times ends up making consecutive poor throws. He’ll walk up to his disc in the woods and look high for a second, look low for a second and end up tomahawking a driver into the fifth tree away from him and then repeat the process.
You don’t want him to become The Deep Thinker, but you would certainly appreciate it if he spent a few more seconds considering his shot to shave a few strokes off of his score so he can start pulling his weight in your dubs match.
How Often Is Quirk Valuable: Often for your own self-esteem as a disc golf player.
Does He Slow Down Play: Yes, as he will inevitably lose site of an errant throw at least three times a round.
Skill Level In Group: Below-Average
The guy who gets into the sport and becomes addicted to the look, feel and smell of new plastic. He can’t help but swing by the disc store every time he’s on that side of town and never leaves empty handed. If you go a few weeks in a row without playing with him, he’ll likely have replaced most of his bag since last time.
The beauty of this condition is that it can affect anybody in the group. From the newest guy who is 15 strokes behind the rest of the group to the guy who has started playing in local tournaments. Anybody is fodder for the plastic bug.
How Often Is Quirk Valuable: Frequently, he gives you free testing of new discs
Does He Slow Down Play: Sometimes when trying to decide between his 3 new first run prototype drivers he just bought off of eBay.
Skill Level In Group: All Ranges
The Obsessed One
I’m using Evan’s term here, check the self-written bio page. He is the guy who starts a blog and posts ridiculously helpful and lengthy posts analyzing throw types. Only after videotaping himself throwing in an open field and posting to all of the disc golf outlets he knows of. Everybody loves improving, but (as the name implies) he goes above and beyond the normal desire to practice and improve. He wants to destroy everyone he knows and start winning rec divisions. If you go a few weeks without playing with him, you will notice he knows at least a dozen other new people in other groups on whichever course you happen to be playing. This is what happens when you play a minimum of 36 holes a day.
How Often Is Quirk Valuable: Frequently, he dispenses sound advice without the in your face attitude
Does He Slow Down Play: No, he’s in too much of a hurry to get to his next shot so he can practice his new upshot/putt/thumber he just read about.
Skill Level In Group: Upper-tier (he better be!)
You: “I heard Prodigy was going to release a limited run of M3’s with a special print later this summer”
Guru: “No, you’re wrong, it’s M2’s and they come out in October, I’m already on the pre-order
You (to another person in group): “It looks like you’re taking the disc back inside a little instead of down the line, that might be causing those turnover throws.”
Guru: “No, his takeback isn’t perfect but it is good enough, what he needs to do is concentrate on opening the shoulders after the disc crosses the chest so he doesn’t pull his arm over the top and turn over the disc.”
You: “I found this sweet new disc golf site called HyzerFlipped.com, you should check it out”
Guru: “I saw that two months ago, those guys suck.”
His advice may be sound, but nobody cares by the back nine because you are tired of hearing him correct everybody.
How Often Is Quick Valuable: Almost always, but it is almost never worth it.
Does He Slow Down Play: No, he speeds it up because the other players want to finish to get away
Skill Level In Group: Above Average, unfortunately.