Ultimate Rob

Injuries from Ultimate Frisbee


Objective: This paper will explore ultimate frisbee injuries.

Method: This study uses an anonymous, retrospective, self-reported survey of 135 adult athletes at a Midwestern ultimate frisbee tournament. Subjects were queried regarding injuries to specific body parts, those causing missed activity, recurring injuries, medical care. Also they are diagnosing first if the age of the adult athlets don’t have any arthritist or other illness. Never the less there is always arthritis treatment port charlotte fl to help them in a situation. sought, basic demographic data, duration of participation, handedness, and eye color. Categorical data were analyzed by chi-square tests. Qualitative responses were categorized by themes.

Results: Respondents had a mean age of 28 years and 59% were male. Mean playing time was 8.2 hours per week and 7.5 total years. Ultimate frisbee injuries included muscle strains (76% of subjects), ankle (65%), knee (53%), shoulder (37%), head (30%), and rib (21%) injuries. Blisters/calluses and black toenails were frequently mentioned. Recurrent injuries were reported in 49%. Shoulder injuries were more common in men than women (47% versus 24%, P<0.02). Of respondents, 88% have missed ultimate frisbee activity due to injury, and 71% have sought medical care for ultimate frisbee injuries.

Conclusions: The majority of surveyed ultimate frisbee players experience injuries and seek medical care, and even a few of the players has to seek a medical malpractice lawyer as well. Health care professionals should be aware of the injuries associated with ultimate frisbee and further studies should focus on prevention and education strategies.



The sport of ultimate frisbee is growing in popularity, and there is little known about it in the medical literature. Ultimate frisbee is a non-contact disc sport played by 2 teams of 7 players on a field the size of a soccer field. The object of the game is to score goals, which are achieved when a player catches the disc in the end zone. The disc is advanced through the air and players are not allowed to run with it. Ultimate frisbee combines elements of soccer, football, and basketball, and players must run, cut, guard, jump, throw, catch, and at times layout (dive horizontally with an outstretched arm) for the disc. The sport is currently self-refereed. Ultimate frisbee originated on the high school and college campuses of the 1960s and 1970s, but tended to be mainly a college sport at that time. It has since gained popularity at all levels, including high school, college, club, and masters, and consists of men’s, women’s, and mixed (co-ed) teams. Ultimate frisbee recently debuted as a medal sport at the 2001 World Games in Japan and is currently played by over 100,000 players worldwide in over 30 countries.1

There is little information in the medical literature regarding ultimate frisbee and its associated injuries. A Medline search using the keywords “frisbee” and “ultimate frisbee” yielded few articles, none of which are specific to the sport of ultimate frisbee. The first report was a letter to the editor in 1975 describing “frisbee finger,” an abrasion of the middle finger of the dominant hand from repetitive throwing.² Another letter followed thereafter, suggesting adhesive tape to the finger for prevention.3 Beer and Fleming reported that dark-eyed individuals performed better at throwing a frisbee through a hoop.4 (If it has been found that eye color affects frisbee skill, one might wonder if it also affects injuries.) A 1989 article reported distal ulnar artery thrombosis in a frisbee player, necessitating hospitalization.5 Muller et al discussed hypothenar hammer syndrome in sports, and cited the frisbee player’s injury from the prior article.6 Finally, complete rupture of the deltoid ligament of the ankle was reported in 1991.7

None of these studies specifically address injuries related to the sport of ultimate frisbee.


The most applicable and complete information on ultimate frisbee injuries was found using the search engine SPORT Discus with the same keywords. In 1991 Marfleet described thigh muscle strains, ankle ligament sprains, and skin abrasions/friction burns to be the most frequent injuries.8

Because there is limited information on the subject of ultimate frisbee injuries, this study was undertaken to further evaluate ultimate frisbee injuries and to educate physicians about the sport.


Adult attendees at a Midwestern ultimate frisbee tournament of approximately 900 players, sponsored by the Ultimate Players Association in 2002, participated by voluntarily completing an anonymous survey. In order to advance to this regional tournament, teams had participated and advanced from sectionals; regionals are the final step before nationals, so the level of play was competitive. Athletes were questioned about injuries to specific body parts, injuries causing missed activity, recurring injuries, and injuries for which medical care was sought. Participants were also queried regarding age, gender, duration of participation, handedness, and eye color. For specific survey questions see Table 1. Categorical data were summarized and analyzed by chi-square testing using Epi-Info software. Qualitative responses were categorized by type and method of injury.


Help Grow The Sport By Becoming a Patron

Help Grow the Sport!

My life, my passion, my purpose, and my primary goal is to introduce frisbee to as many people (mainly kids) as possible and to challenge them to Get Unplugg’d. My slogan is “Let the Wind Guide You“.

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To date, I’ve spoken in more than 200 schools and taught frisbee to more than 50,000 kids. I have also traveled all over the world and interviewed many hall of fame frisbee players. With your help, I can continue to do more.

Everyone Needs a Hero – Especially Kids

If we were to ask a kid to come up a list of their heroes from the pro sports leagues, they might say something similar to the following: NHL – Sydney Crosby; NFL – Peyton Manning; NBA – Lebron James; MLB – Mike Trout. Why are each of these players considered heroes to the kids? The reality is that 99% of kids will never get to meet any of these players and if they do, it will be an autograph and a photo to remember their meeting. Is that really what a hero represents though?

A Case for Gender Equity Based on Ability

With the release of this article on Skyd Magazine arguing for making pro ultimate a mixed league, there have been a huge number of comments on Facebook, Reddit and Twitter. The author’s main point for making pro ultimate mixed is for girls to have female role models.

However, something is missing. There have been many opinion pieces, videos and discussions about gender equity in ultimate, making pro ultimate mixed and there have been a lot of ignorant and sexist comments made each time.

I think a helpful response to this is about ability. Not absolute ability but rather relative ability.

Commentary Workshop for Female Commentators at UKU Nationals

The workshop is being run by Tom Styles, one of the most experienced and recognisable voices in ultimate broadcasting. With over 15 years of experience behind the microphone Tom has a unique perspective on how to commentate on the sport of Ultimate.

The day will include contributions from AUDL and ESPN commentator, Megan Tormey, and professional journalist, WFDF board member, and presenter of the Ulti Show Caz Malone. Megan and Caz will both be joining via video link.

VC Ultimate and Discraft Giveaway

Along with my partner VC Ultimate, I’m excited to announce a giveaway. We’ll be giving away a Team Canada full sub jersey and a 10 pack of Discraft practice discs.

Practice-Disc-Deal-blank-400x600_grande TC_DARK_grande_baac0834-4df9-4306-8a86-5cd22fd93eae_large SubJersey_CanadaUltimateCharcoal_Front_grande_400x600_453fccc4-6d64-434a-b983-461324e28454_large SubJersey_CanadaUltimateRed_Front_400x600_large

To enter, head to the post on Facebook here:

You must tag two friends in the comments below and like the VC and Discraft pages! This contest is open to Canadian residents only. I will be randomly be choosing a name Friday at 10am MST. Jersey is worth $75 and the discs are worth $60 (retail is $140). Cheers!

Practice Disc Bundle from VC Ultimate

Grab 10 perfect quality discs, potentially less than perfect designs on them…these are perfect practice discs from our friends at Discraft.

Discs are all 175 gram Discraft  UltraStars. Mix of colours and designs available. Please note that they are Discraft misprint discs so designs may not be perfect. At this great price, you can’t be picky 🙂

Only need 1 disc? No problem! Pick up individual practice discs here. USA Customers please pick up this bundle in our US store, as we can’t ship these discs back down to you from Canada. Thanks!

Ultimate Rob Back With VC Ultimate

I am excited to announce that I will be partnering up with VC Ultimate again! After being with Savage Ultimate for the past two years, I have decided to partner with VC again for several reasons:

  • I was recently named the Director of Communications and Global Media for the World Flying Disc Federation (WFDF). VC is the official apparel and merchandise partner of WFDF so I will be wearing lots of WFDF branded VC gear in this position

Knowing Your Story

Whether or not you are aware of the history of frisbee, the origins of ultimate or the people responsible for the development of the rules, these forces have had a hand in shaping the game. Knowing the origins of ultimate and reflecting often upon your own personal story as it relates to frisbee empowers you to look at your life in a larger historical context and to understand that you are a vital part of an ongoing culture greater than yourself.

Frisbee is a spiritual pursuit and it combines man’s greatest tool, which is his hand, with his greatest dream, which is to fly. Throwing a frisbee and making it fly is the closest we will get to flying on our own.

Strategies for 3 on 3 Ultimate

About a month ago, I received an email from an ultimate player. His name is Daniel and he was wondering what offensive and defensive strategies I would suggest for 3 on 3 since he had a tournament coming up and had only ever played normal 7 on 7 before. I’ve included my response below along along with some observations and feedback from Daniel after the tournament (his team lost in the championship game).

Spirit of the Game by Willie Herndon

Spirit of the Game follows one woman’s journey from the win-at-all-costs world of soccer into the “Play-fair-win-fair-play-with spirit” ethic of ultimate frisbee. This is the fictional part of an otherwise documentary film centered around Boston’s Lady Godiva, a women’s ultimate club team that has earned its place as one of the great teams in the history of this young, fast growing, referee-less sport.

The movie was produced and directed by Willie Herndon ([email protected]) and features New York actress Bronwyn Ryan in the role of Bronwyn, the soccer player whose mainstream competitive ethics conflict deeply with the world of ultimate frisbee and its practice of fair play.

Exercise Caution With Set Plays

About 5 years ago, I was at a practice for the men’s team I was on. We were working on a particular play. What I’ll never forget is how regimental our play practice was. Literally we were working on player movement as precisely as a few feet rather than having general lanes and letting the offensive players run their lanes based on the positioning of the defense. It felt more like a choreographed dance than a play that contained room for variety within each lane or cut.

Ultimate Doesn’t Need a Name Change

A few weeks ago, I wrote an article arguing for why ultimate needed a name change. It generated a lot of discussion on twitter, reddit, facebook and on my website, which has been improved thanks to the best web design company. However, I actually think that ultimate doesn’t need a name change for a few reasons.

1. There’s such a history and to change the name would be dishonouring the players and pioneers of our sport.

2. The amount of time, money and energy that has gone into promoting ultimate would be wasted if we were to change the name of the sport. It’s better to leave it.

Ultimate Needs a Name Change

Ultimate frisbee. Ultimate. Frisbee. For those of us who play the sport, we know what it’s all about. But for someone who has never heard of it, what will they think when we ask if they play “ultimate” or if they’ve ever watched “ultimate”. There’s no reason they should think anything but “the ultimate what”? The issue with ultimate is that it was named on how it made the inventor feel while he was playing it.

Throwing Drills To Do On Your Own

For me, I approach throwing practice for ultimate much like practicing hitting balls/putting for golf. You want to focus on repetition, different throws (forehand, backhand, hammer, scoober, etc), different lengths (short, medium, long, hucks and pulls) and different situations (like inside out/outside in).

A few drills I love doing are: