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First of all, one thing needs to be understood. The sport called "Ultimate Frisbee" has been changed to "Ultimate" but is often still referred to as "Ultimate Frisbee." "Frisbee" is a name registered by Wham-O for one of their particular products, the "Frisbee Disc." This means than an ultimate disc may not necessarily be a Frisbee (and often isn't). The Ultimate Frisbee Disc was the original disc used for the sport of Ultimate, but since the invention of Ultimate Frisbee and the Ultimate Frisbee Disc other companies have produced their own plastic to be used for the sport.
There are many different discs made for the game of ultimate frisbee but only a few are common among ultimate players around the world. The first and most popular name among them to anyone, ultimate player or not, is the Frisbee disc which was discussed earlier. Another ultimate disc is called the Ultra-Star which is created by Discraft. The Discraft Ultra-Star was selected as the official disc for championship play by USA Ultimate, the United States national governing body of ultimate. It may be worth mentioning another ultimate disc, the Daredevil "Game Disc." This disc is not as widely used in ultimate play worldwide but has recently acheived championship approval by USA Ultimate. Innova, a well known disc golf disc company also makes an ultimate disc called the "Pulsar." This disc is now the official ultimate disc for Major League Ultimate (MLU) and has a general approval status by USA Ultimate for recreational use, minor leagues, and minor tournaments.
The weight of the disc is an important factor to consider when choosing a plastic to play with. The official weight used for USA Ultimate tournaments is 175 grams. The Wham-O Frisbee Disc, Discraft Ultra-Star, Daredevil Game Disc, and Innova Pulsar are all 175 gram discs. Wham-O and Innova also make discs that exceed the official 175 gram weight limit allowed for officiated games. These 200 gram discs, though not allowed on sanctioned tournaments can be fun to throw and have the potential for greater distance.
Disc durability refers to the resistance a plastic has to objects it may hit. With any disc you use it will wear out from being scraped, stepped on, hit, and bent. The durability of a disc will determine the number of discs you will use in a given ultimate frisbee tournament or game. While that is taken into consideration, the consistency of an ultimate disc is equally if not more important. This is the ability for a disc to maintain a true response when thrown the same way after receiving damaging blows and enduring multiple scuffs. When a disc gets worn down the chips and scrapes and misshaping of the disc will cause it to fly differently but a disc with good consistency will maintain its flight pattern well despite its imperfections received from use. The Discraft Ultra-Star is known for its incredible resistance to damage as well as its ability to maintain consistent in flight after extensive use.
The feel of a disc refers to how well you can grip the plastic and how comfortable it is to throw. The fall in popularity of the Wham-O's Ultimate Frisbee Disc on ultimate fields may have been greatly attributed to its uncomfortable rim. Many ultimate players feel the Frisbee has a steeper edge that becomes painful over time to throw forehand. On the contrary the Discraft Ultra-Star has strong reviews for its smooth rim and easy to grip plastic.
You can find the USA Ultimate approved discs on their website www.usaultimate.org. Of these, the Discraft Ultra-Star, and the Dardevil Gamedisc are the only ultimate discs currently approved for use in the USA Ultimate High School Championship and USA Ultimate College and Club Championship Series. All the other discs mentioned are only approved for recreational use, minor leagues, and minor tournaments.
The Discraft Ultra-Star is also an approved regulation disc for disc golf according to the Professional Disc Golf Association list of Approved Golf Discs.
The popularity of discs is directly related to which discs are approved for ultimate game play in official tournaments and leagues. The #1 disc used in ultimate frisbee games around the globe is the Discraft Ultra-Star. Most ultimate players prefer the feel and consistency of Ultra-Stars over other ultimate disc brands.
Ultra-Stars come in various colors; white, black, blue, red, orange, yellow, light blue, and blue sparkle as well as Nite Glow and UV which changes colors in the sun light. Of these, the standard white Ultra-Star is the most popular disc for it's strong day and evening visibility while the orange Ultra-Star is second most popular for it's strong visibility in snowy weather.
With its contoured grip and aerodynamic engineering, the Ultra-Star™ has set the standard for quality, consistency and performance. The ultimate disc most often used that fits regulations and player's demands is the Discraft Ultra-Star for its comfortable grip, flight consistency, durability and distance. You can purchase Discraft Ultra-Stars from any of the following ultimate disc stores:
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