"It's just a game."
This is an expression that many of us have heard all too many times by those who either
A.) Don't take a competitive game seriously,
B/.) Justify a poor performance to help make themselves feel better.
But, it's so much more!
Just like in every sport out there, there are countless valuable life lessons to be gained and taught within the sport of disc golf.
Some, you learn on your own, while others come from either other players you surround yourself with, or by a governing body that provides rules, structure, etiquette, and common courtesy.
At the core of this sport, practice is where the most essential lessons come into play.
Dedicating some time out of your day, hopefully more often than not, to hone and perfect technique, timing, angle control, distance, touch, and much much more will not only build your skill set, but also your character.
Without the obedience to get out and put the time in, one cannot expect to maximize their skill benefits.
You don't want to get better?
Go ahead and be the occasional weekend warrior, but also don't let your emotions get the best of you when you're not performing the way you'd like (or blaming every disc you have as being a "bad disc.")
In order to practice well, it's a great idea to reach out to different resources to come up with good practice strategies to help maintain the desire to put in an maximum effort practice.
This can be done with drills, competition, and the setting of goals.
Accountability and Integrity
Sports have designated rules for a reason. That reason is to set a baseline of ways to ensure that no player gains an unfair advantage over another in common circumstances.
Without a referee standing right next to you, it can sometimes be easy for someone to want to take advantage of a given situation to give themselves an advantage which would be against the rules.
This can range from: shaving strokes, taking another shot and avoiding the primary shot, foot fouling, being a distraction to another player, using unapproved equipment, and many more.
Conforming to a set of rules and abiding by them in ALL situations, playing solo or with others, really helps to build character and integrity.
Players will quickly remember you as being the guy that tried to cheat should you get caught, so just don't do it!
Passing on learned information
One of the greatest gifts in any path of life, is the ability to give back and pay forward the lessons you've been taught to help you succeed.
Disc golf is an exploding sport with record breaking numbers of people getting PDGA ranked, signing up for tournaments, and buying disc golf gear.
Spreading good disc golf knowledge is one of the kindest and most humbling things to do as an experienced player.
Even getting new players involved is amazing!
Growing the sport is literally what our aim is, but it's going to spread so much faster when each one of you get your friends and family out to play for the first time.
We all know that all it takes is one good throw or putt to hook someone. But, teaching those new players so that they can progress quickly is a gracious gift of your time and wisdom that many new players don't get the benefit from.
Learning how to lose
Everyone likes to win, and nobody likes to lose.
That's human nature IF you're a competitive person to any degree.
The fact of the matter is that there's always someone out there better than you and it's a good lesson to learn that losing isn't then end of the world. In reality, losing is a great way to continue having obtainable goals to try and reach.
In short, it's the ultimate motivator.
It also gives people someone to emulate and hopefully find themselves eventually one day beating.
How much sweeter is the glory of finally taking down that opponent you've lost to a few times before? Or perhaps picking up a competitive rivalry where you and the other player are always battling for the win, but the results switch back an forth?
Playing with Others
It's really easy to stay in your comfort zone and either play solo all the time, or with the same set of friends you've been playing with. But, where do you get outside, more experienced feedback to help improve?
Playing with others either casually, in a league, or in tournament settings can help you immensely to not only learn how to play better, but also build more confidence, social skills, and decision making.
Learning how to deal with different individuals is crucial to preparing yourself for dealing with people in the real world. Unfortunately, not everyone is as nice as they come across in church, especially in a competitive setting.
But working on these social skills can help you develop how you want to be perceived to others, as well as how you interact with those that perhaps you don't quite enjoy being around.
Playing a game and holding yourself to a set of standards that should help make the game fun and fair for everyone involved is beneficial not only in the moment, but goes on to be implemented in the way we live our daily, everyday lives.
Be courteous, punctual, honest, respectful, and environmentally friendly in all aspects of life to bring you and the other people around you a more prosperous life, even when competing out on the course.
Not only will doing this make you a better disc golfer, but also a better person.
That being said, go have fun and Happy Disc Golfing!
Click on the banner below to shop all your disc golf needs at infinitediscs.com!
*Some links are affiliate links meaning that we may earn a small commission when you make a qualifying purchase with the links that we provide. You can read our full affiliate disclosures on our home page*