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What is Ultimate Frisbee? Where and how to practice?

The great reactivity demanded of the players and the flexibility of the rules of the game are some of the characteristics of the ultimate frisbee. Find out all about this sport, whose roots are traced back to the United States of the 1940s.

What is it?

Some also call it Flying disc, others refer to it more simply as the Ultimate. If it uses the same plastic disc that we launch on the beaches, the similarities end there. Ultimate Frisbee follows well-established rules, although they are quite flexible in practice. As a competitive discipline, it involves 2 teams, of 7 players if played outdoors, or 5 in its version played indoors. The other main difference with the playful Frisbee© lies in the much more demanding character of the Ultimate.

A good mastery of tactics as well as an ability to adapt to external climatic hazards condition success in the practice of this sport, which also requires great endurance. The first official version of the rules of the game appeared at the end of the 1960s. Arrived in France at the beginning of the 1970s, the ultimate aroused more and more enthusiasm among the 2 sexes and among all age groups. In 2005, it was practiced by nearly a million young people as a school sport.

How is ultimate frisbee played?

The absence of a referee is the distinctive feature of this discipline which prohibits physical contact. Players judge faults themselves and thereby develop a real sense of fair play. The rules of the game do not provide for a predefined duration. A match can end when a team reaches the number of points set at the start of the match, or when the agreed time has elapsed. It is interesting to note that the teams formed can be mixed. Each player is equipped with a chasuble in the colors of his team. The presence of goals for flying discs is optional, the disc itself being the main material. Cleats are recommended for outdoor practice. In the indoor version, any sports shoes will do.

The game is started when the disc is thrown by the team designated to start. If it is a replay, the team that scored the last point throws. At this point, the players line up on their respective goal lines. The disc thus launched is recovered by the opposing team at its landing point and the attacks are initiated.

Actual gameplay

The player who catches the disc has 10 seconds to choose a maneuver. If he has not done anything with the disc during this time, it goes to the opposing team. In terms of actions, the record holder has no right to walk with it. He simply pivots to throw the equipment in the direction he wants. The idea is to make passes, so that the disc is finally received in the opposing end zone. For the defending players, the objective is to interrupt the evolution of the disc, by knocking it down or intercepting it. Noting that only one player has the right to charge whoever holds the disc. This one changes possession if he falls or the opposing team interrupts him. A disc caught off the field, during the attack phase, also implies a change of possession.

In this chase to recover the disc, it is necessary to handle certain techniques. There are in particular the forehand, the backhand or the crocodile, the mastery of which requires long familiarization sessions. The challenge:to succeed in throwing a flat and stable disc – so that it is easy to receive – by giving it a good rotation. As in any sporting discipline, the Ultimate session is preceded by rigorous warm-ups. Jogging, abs, push-ups and joint warm-up exercises are on the menu.

Where to practice ultimate?

Basically, the discipline is practiced outdoors on a field of 100 m by 37 m. An in-goal area of ​​18 m is delimited at each end of the surface, the game evolves over an area of ​​64 m. A handball court hosts the practice of the indoor version, a very interesting alternative to continue practicing in cold weather. More and more clubs are getting organized around this sport, which has nearly 1,500 members in France. The FFDF site allows you to quickly find a club in training or affiliated, in your region. Highlighting that the French federation includes an Ultimate Armchair pole.

Ultimate frisbee video