Speed, Glide, Turn, Fade – Disc Flight Ratings
With thousands of disc golf discs on the market, it’s important to understand the disc flight ratings, while you’re in the field, so that you know what each disc can do. Especially if you’re carrying a bunch of them.
Understanding the disc flight ratings is an important step to mastering disc golf. When I first started I pretty much just threw whatever plastic disc was available to me. I had some friends that would talk about “overstable” and “hyzer” but I never really understood, or could remember, what each of those terms meant.
As I progressed in the game, I began to understand that each disc has a different flight path — from the speed, glide, turn, and fade — and knowing what each disc can do well, and not so well, can really propel your game to the next level.
To summarize in my own quick and dirty words what each disc flight rating represents:
Speed is has a lot to do with the width of the rim of the disc, as it relates to how fast it can be thrown — if you need distance you need speed, but it can be harder to control.
Glide is the ability to stay afloat in the air — which can effect the flight differently in different winds.
Turn is the stability of the disc — a negative rating meaning “understable” and will turn the disc to the right early in flight, a positive rating meaning “overstable” meaning a tendency to turn to the left (on a right handed backhand throw).
Fade is the finish of the disc after the inertia slows down — most discs will have natural fade to the left and some will have more than others.
Disc Flight Ratings – Video Playlist (4)
I found a great 4 part video series from Best Disc Golf Discs, breaking down each rating, all are worth a watch:
You can always carry around a cheat sheet with the Disc Flight Ratings on it, or like I do, write the numbers right on the disc. This has been helpful for me. Ever since I started doing it, I find my shot selection has been a lot sharper and it’s saved me some headaches and from having to go find my discs in OB.