The best way to describe throwing a forehand is comparing it to a vertical jump. As we know, vertical jumping ability is directly influenced by the speed of the force exerted against the ground during a fixed span of time; the faster the application of that force, the higher the jump. To translate this concept into throwing a forehand, we can infer that the less time it takes to apply a given amount of snap to the disc, the more rotations will be yielded per ‘x’ amount of time. With this, if you look at an exceptional thrower like Alex Thorne, you’ll notice that he has one of the quickest releases out of any thrower in the nation. Furthermore, those quick releases all generally look more or less the same, regardless of the distance of the throw. Such quick releases coupled with a strong snap provide for a throw that will fly through the air with very little observable disruption from wind.
Along with the most common throws in ultimate, we have the ability to throw a bunch of other throws which aren’t very common or never ever used in a game…but they’re throws and learning to throw them is a good way to improve your snap, your field awareness and your overall throwing ability. I would not recommend using these throws in a game, unless absolutely necessary.
The throws are, in order:
- Behind the Back Backhand
- Behind the Back Forehand
- Between the Legs Backhand
- Around Both Legs Backhand
- No Look Backhand
- No Look Forehand
This tutorial video for the Calgary Ultimate Association talks about how to throw a disc with the right edge. The right edge for the wind, the right edge for your receiver and the right edge for your release. The key points to throwing with the right edge are: to practice throwing in all conditions, learn the different edges that you can throw a disc, develop muscle memory and work on your technique.
Video produced for the Calgary Ultimate Association.
*Having good fitness will help but ultimately frisbee skills are more important
Far too often, I read about players spending all of their time in the gym and barely any on the field spent practicing. I don’t mean being at practice with your team. I mean going out on your own (or with a partner) practicing throwing and catching. Throwing and catching are a huge part of the game. If you are the fastest player on your team but you can’t throw or catch, then you won’t be very useful.
Eleven years ago, I bought a frisbee at the University of Alberta’s club week from the University of Alberta Ultimate team. I started throwing that disc in a field close to my aunt + uncle’s house and would throw 3-4 nights per week for an hour each time.
Looking back, it’s easy to see how I started and how far I’ve come. I really appreciate all the support of my fans over the past 2 years and look forward to providing you more videos and articles to help you improve your game.