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Huck, Flick, Hammer

April 19, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve always enjoyed playing Frisbee.  I played Ultimate Frisbee a few times in high school gym class and enjoyed it.  But when I played at Cross Country practice, I really fell in love.  Since then, I’ve played tons of pick-up games up at Penn State, but never really considered playing for anything more.

Now, in Wellington, I’ve joined my Uni’s Ultimate Frisbee Club (technically known as the “Victoria University of Wellington Flying Disk Club” or VUWFDC for legal reasons).  There’s about 25 people that show up each week, though not always the same people.  There’s also another 20 or so that are in the A-grade team, best in New Zealand; they’re going to the World Games in Prague in June.  They don’t come to our normal practices, usually, though.

Frisbee Friday

Pete, from back at PSU, during a fall frisbee game.

For those of you who don’t know what Ultimate Frisbee is, you’re behind the times.  It’s picked up in popularity a lot in recent years, especially on US college campuses.  Originally seen as a pretty dorky sport (and still so, by some), now you’d be hardpressed to find someone who doesn’t enjoy it at least a little.

It’s a pretty easy game to follow.  It’s played on a field the size of an American football field, with endzones on each end just like in football.  Each team has seven players.  Players on a team can toss the disk to each other as much as you want, but you cannot run with the disk.  When the disk is dropped or intercepted by the other team, possession switches to the other team.  A point is over when a member of the team catches the disk in their endzone.  The coolest thing about Ultimate, though, is that there are no referees.  Even in national championship games, any calls are on the players, and most players are pretty fair about it.  More often than not, if there’s a discrepency, a replay will be had, and players will often call fouls on themselves.

You can find more info on the sport here.

In New Zealand, I’ve recently discovered indoor Frisbee.  I’ve played many, many times outside on the football field.  I’ve heard of games being played in full-sized indoor fields.  And I’ve even played the insanely dangerous “Racquetball Frisbee” that some friends invented, played 3 on 3 in a racquetball court.  But this is totally different.

Courtesy of nataliedee.com

This version of indoor Frisbee (which, according to Wikipedia, is played a lot in colder regions such as Northern Europe), is played on a basketball-sized, hard-floor court.  The endzone is not the entire width of the field, but rather an awkward looking trapezoid (similar to foul shot area in basketball).  Scoring can only occur there.  Other changes between regular frisbee include teams of 4, 7-second stall counting instead of 10, and a “brick” call used when someone throws the disk too far on the initial pull.  (I was hoping to find a picture of an indoor field but can’t seem to find one.)

Practice is once a week, and I’ve also joined a league that will start up this Wednesday in Karori.  We’ve been holding a mini-tournament in practices over the past four weeks with four teams.  My team ended up winning tonight, and we ended up with a case of Speights, chips, and lollies.  Not too shabby a prize!

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