Introduction to Flying Disc Freestyle
Freestyle is an extended game of catch and throw where freestylers perform special “tricks” or maneuvers before performing the catch. These frisbee tricks can be simple, like a quick tip to an under the leg catch, or quite complicated. Freestyle is usually distinguished from other frisbee sports because it uses the nail delay, what people commonly think of as “spinning the disc on your finger.” Freestylers use the nail delay to set up all kinds of frisbee tricks like rolls, brushes, tips, pulls, and catches. Freestyle can be done by anyone, anywhere. Easy to play, difficult to master.
- One finger – start off by hanging the frisbee off your index finger. Pull the frisbee towards you and around in a circle, attempting to twirl the frisbee on your finger.
- Switch fingers – As you are twirling the frisbee on one finger, try to switch fingers, going from your index finger, to middle, to ring, to pinky. As an added challenge, try to start on your thumb and work all the way to your pinky finger.
- Switch hands – as you are twirling the frisbee on your index finger, try to transfer the frisbee to your index finger on your other hand. As an added challenge try to go back and forth.
- Upside down – start off with the frisbee upside down on the ground. Start by twirling the disc around your finger, and attempt to pick the disc up off the ground. This will take some patience and practice, but once you can figure out the technique, you’ll be able to keep the disc twirling upside down. It’s similar to hula hooping – you’ll want to try and hook your finger as the disc is twirling so that it doesn’t fall as you have the disc upside down.
Body Throwing & Catching
- Under the Leg
- Throw – left your leg and throw the disc under your leg, attempting to catch the disc normally. Try with your non throwing hand, and alternate throwing under each leg.
- Catch – gently toss the disc up in the air, and try to catch it under your leg. Try to alternate hands and alternate catching it under each leg. As an added challenge, try to throw the disc under your leg and catch it under your leg.
- Behind the Back
- Throw – Throw the disc behind your back and attempt to catch the disc normally. Alternate throwing between hands.
- Catch – Toss the disc up and attempt to catch behind your back. Attempt to alternate throwing between hands, and catching between hands.
Frisbees spin in two directions – clockwise and counterclockwise. Start off by gently tossing the disc vertically in the air. Think of the frisbee like a clock, with the bottom of the frisbee representing 6 o’clock. Brush your hand across the disc at 6 o’clock, keeping the disc spinning in the same direction that you originally threw it up.
Start off holding the disc in one hand and using either the opposite hand or the same hand that’s holding the disc (by flicking your wrist), try to roll the disc along your arms and chest and finish with the disc in your opposite hand. You will want to lean back and bring both of your arms up so it creates a “C” so you can attempt to have the frisbee roll down your arm, across your chest, and back up the other arm. You don’t need to have a lot of spin on the disc as the disc will gently roll.
Similar to skateboarding, you can combine multiple tricks together to create a “combo”.
For example – throw the disc under your leg, brush the disc, chest roll the disc, and catch the disc behind your back. You can make the combos as simple or as complicated as you’d like. A combo is at least 2 tricks together in sequence, connecting the throw to the catch.
The great thing about Freestyle is that because there are more than 150 ways to throw, and endless ways to catch, Freestyle itself has infinite possibilities.
Make up a throw – make up a catch – make up a trick!