Last updated on November 6th, 2023 at 01:43 pm
Last updated by Simon
There are a lot of things disc golfers have to understand. Aside from the rules and gameplay of the sport, they have to understand techniques, equipment, terminology, and flight patterns. Just covering the difference of discs and their ratings and their types and their plastics can overwhelm a newbie. When I observed a few players using a mini disc, the question arose: “What are mini disc golf discs used for?”
If you’re wondering about the purpose of mini disc golf discs, here’s a detailed explanation.
Mini Disc Golf Discs are Markers
The main purpose of mini disc golf discs is to mark the position of the disc previously thrown. In the game, every time a player throws a disc, his position on the course changes. He then has to throw another disc (or the same disc, depending on usage) to get nearer to the hole. However, the nearest spot to the hole from which he can throw is where the previous disc landed. This spot is called the lie.
The mini disc marks that spot. If a player doesn’t have a mini disc, he has to leave his previously thrown disc on the spot it landed. And when he throws the next shot, he will throw at least a disc farther from the hole than necessary. A mini disc gives the player that extra nearness to the hole.
For some players, that extra foot of nearness to the hole doesn’t really matter. But to some, like myself, those 8 extra inches can make the difference between a successful or a failed putt. I find it helpful to use a mini disc golf disc, especially when putting.
Do Players Have to Mark Their Lie
The Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) states that players don’t have to mark their lie every time, except for a few exceptions.
If the disc goes out of bounds, the player must mark their lie. If the position where the previous throw landed has to be moved due to a rule, the player must also mark their position. Apart from these two exceptions, players are not required to mark their lie, and you can likely play a tournament round without a mini marker disc if necessary.
Are There Benefits to Using Mini Disc Golf Markers?
The usage of mini disc golf markers comes down to preference. For some, using a mini disc golf disc gives an edge. I relate to this sentiment. For me, there are a lot of advantages to marking my lie with a mini disc golf disc.
Mini Disc Golf Discs Give Extra Amount of Space
I feel like the extra space a mini disc gives me is indispensable. Without a mini disc, I have to leave my previous disc where it landed and set my lie by throwing the next shot behind it. But marking my lie by placing the mini disc in front of my previous used disc gives me a few more inches to work with. These few inches help me better get my bearings, especially when focusing on putting. It also helps give confidence knowing that I am that much closer to the basket.
Placing Mini Marker Discs Gets Me Into the Right Mindset
Another benefit of using a mini disc that I can’t forego is the routine it gives me. Players have a routing before making a shot. These routines differ from player to player. A part of my routine is placing a mini disc in front of my previous disc. This small action gets me into the mindset of making a throw.
When I’m winding up for a throw, I don’t want to see my driver or midrange disc on my approach path. I want as little obstacle in my view as possible. I want to keep my focus on where I’m throwing my next disc.
Additionally, slowing down and marking my lie gives me more time to contemplate on my next throw. The extra few seconds afforded me when marking my position helps clear my head.
But again, these advantages apply to me personally. Other players don’t like using minidisc golf discs. They prefer getting into the next throw without pause. The usage of a mini disc golf disc comes down to preference (unless the rules of the sport says otherwise).
What Markers Does the PDGA Allow?
The PDGA has established standards for the mini discs permitted in professional games. According to the association’s technical standards guide, the mini disc must be within 7 to 15 cm in diameter. That is the only rule.
You can craft the disc from various materials, such as wood or metal, as long as it conforms to the specified diameter. Players can even use custom made mini disc golf markers, the PDGA won’t have any problem with that.
FAQ’s about Mini Marker Discs
Q. What are mini disc golf discs used for?
A. They are used to mark the player’s lie.
Q. Do players have to mark their lie?
A. Only on two occasions does the PDGA require players to mark their lie. 1. When the disc flies out of bounds or a rule requires the player to change their position. 2. If a player is going to use the same disc they previously threw.
Q. Are there benefits to using mini disc golf discs?
A. The usage of mini disc golf markers comes down to preference. Some players find it advantageous, others don’t.
Q. What markers does the PDGA allow?
A. As long as the marker falls within the specified size range of 7 to 15 cm in diameter and is less than 2 cm in height, it is permitted. Mini marker discs can be crafted from various materials, such as plastic, glass, metal, foam, wood, rubber, recycled materials, and more.
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