Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Journey to Controlled Distance

By Brian Castello

First off I would like to say thanks to Heavy Disc for allowing me to come on board and share my disc golf journey and other disc golf topics with you from time to time.

I am just a fellow amateur player who has been bitten by the disc golf bug and is on a mission to improve my game. I thought it would be interesting to chronicle my journey from what I think is basically the start of my adventure to better form and hopefully becoming a better disc golfer.

If you're a natural talent to disc golf; if you pick up the game and start throwing 350-400ft within few months of playing I applaud you. You're the envy of many players including myself.

My experience has definitely been different. If I could summarize my journey into a few different points/phases it would be this:

  1. Hard work
  2. Persevere through frustration (bad habits are hard to break)
  3. Small victories

The title picture is a perfect example. That is a picture someone over at DGCR (dgcoursereview.com) made for me when giving me feedback for my form. I had been doing fieldwork almost daily but for the most part I hadn't been filming my throwing sessions. It can be a hard pill to swallow knowing you worked your tail off to get better, and then you look at the film/pictures and realize you got a long way to go. It really shows the importance of filming yourself during at least a few of your field work sessions each week.

I've learned there is no silver bullet. There is no magic thing that will make you instantly go throwing from 300ft to 400ft. Its a cycle of putting hard work into your field work sessions. (Be intentional with your field work. Don't just go out there and throw plastic in a field. It's most likely not going to get you the results you want.)  Film yourself throw; then get feedback from people more knowledgeable than you. Take the advice and incorporate when necessary into your form. Persevere through the bad days and enjoy the small victories. Repeat as needed.

Great minds think alike. This sums up everything quite nicely.
And I can't stress this enough: you will eat, drink, sleep, think, poop, video review, work, write, take notes, ponder upon, mull over, and of course field work these issues... until you simply want to give up and just throw the disc however feels comfortable. Some days, you'll probably want to leave your discs sitting near a disc golf course with a note reading, "FREE TO A GOOD HOME, ENJOY!"

And then the next day, you'll pick up your bag of discs and head out to the field to get back to work.     - Heavy Disc
Before I started working on form I could throw around 325-350ft depending on how good of throw it was. However, I couldn't tell you where in the world it would be going. I would play in tournaments and most of the time finish last in my division. Players that wouldn't out drive me threw with better accuracy and played smarter than me. I knew I had hit a ceiling when it came to my disc golf game.

Sometimes you have to take a step backwards to move forwards. If we are honest with ourselves we never want to hear that statement. Losing distance when trying to gain distance will hurt your pride especially when you see other players out driving you. Today, I can throw around 270-310ft from a one step/standstill shot. Most of those shots are on the 270ft side as well. However, I'm starting to throw my shots with better accuracy and hit my intended lines with a greater percentage. I will take that every time over uncontrolled distance on my shots.

I am definitely excited about my disc golf future and my journey to more controlled distance. I look forward to sharing my struggles, frustrations, small victories and (hopefully) breakthroughs. I know I have a long way to go, but it should be a fun ride nonetheless.

1 comment:

  1. Welcome Brian. I am glad you took up the offer to use HeavyDisc as a venue to log your journey and I'm looking forward to following along.