Do the Numbers Matter on a Disc?

Ever wonder what each number means when looking at a disc golf? Do they matter? In short, yes, but in this blog we will be going over what each number means on a disc, and how you can use this information to get the best disc golf for yourself that you can. We hope this helps you to become the best disc golfer you can be! 


The first number that is found on a disc is the speed of the disc. This is the rating that represents how quickly a player must release the disc in order for the proper flight path to occur. A faster disc will cut through weather more efficiently, have more potential for further distance, and have larger skips when hitting the ground. More speed can result in longer distances. Slower discs are typically more controlled and accurate. With that being said if a faster disc is thrown you will have more potential for distance, but will be severely punished if the disc is not accurate. Beginners, should look for slower discs until they are able to consistently have a consistent and controlled throw. The speed of the disc is rated on a 1-14 scale, with 1 being the slowest. Putters are typically the slowest discs out of the three types. 


The next number is the discs ability to stay in the air, otherwise known as glide. This is scored between 1 and 6. Higher numbers tend to stay in the air longer while slowing down. Higher numbers also tend to be easier to control. Discs that have more glide tend to be best for newer players. If you want to learn more about what we recommend to new players check out our blog Disc Golf for Beginners: The Basics. Beginners want more distance in the beginning and should choose discs that have a high glide rating. The lower rating glide discs tend to be more accurate in high wind situations. 


Turn is the third number that is on a disc. For this number we are going to take the viewpoint of a right handed back hand throws. For a right handed back hand throw a disc with a 1 will have the most resistance to turning to the right. While a -5 disc will turn the right the most when being thrown. This is scored between 1 and -5. Beginners that are learning to throw should look for a disc with a lower score because they are easier to throw and are more accurate in the wind. 

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The last number that is typically on a disc is fade. Again these examples are being shown as if you are a right handed back hand thrower. The fade is the discs tendency to hook left at the end of flight. This is rated from 0 to 5. A 0 will finish the straightest and not turn, while a 5 will hook hard left at the end of the throw. If you want to check out some of our disc recommendations for beginners, check out our content Best Disc for Beginners.


There are no guidelines when it comes to each of these ratings. Why does that matter to you? Let’s say you get a Discraft disc when you first start, but lose it. You go to the store and find an Innova disc that had the same numbers on it. It most likely is not going to fly the same exact way that your previous disc did since there are no public guidelines that define each rating. Which leads me into our next topic in this blog. Since there are no guidelines to numbers Discraft has an extra rating that is called stability. This is an additional turn rating that is rated from -3 to 3. Overstable discs are positive numbers and understable discs are negative numbers. A score of zero is a stable disc. If you want to learn more click here. If you are more of a visual learner, please check out Discrafts flight chart for this, by clicking here.


A few things that we want you to take away from this article is that in the beginning when learning the numbers will have only a small impact. Practice makes perfect. The more you go out and disc golf, the more you will learn. As a beginner take every opportunity as a learning experience. This will be key to your progression as you become the best possible disc golfer. 

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