Out of bounds (OB) is a common term in disc golf used to describe an area on the course that is marked off-limits for play. Any thrown disc that lands outside of the boundaries of an OB area incurs a penalty. OB areas can include water hazards, rough terrain, defined lines, or designated areas such as parking lots or roads.
The OB rule is essential in disc golf as it adds an extra layer of challenge and strategy to gameplay. It also ensures players respect the surrounding environment and other players sharing the course.
However, for newcomers to the sport, OB can be intimidating. The possibility of losing valuable strokes or precious discs in an OB area can be intimidating, making some players shy away from taking risks. But with practice and understanding, all players can learn to approach OB throws with confidence and skill.
Understanding the Types of OB Penalties
There are two types of OB penalties in disc golf: stroke and distance.
When a player incurs a stroke penalty, it means the throw is counted as if it were taken from the previous lie. For example, a player throws out of bounds on their second shot. When taking their next shot, they must throw from the same lie as their previous, adding one to their overall score.
The distance penalty is a more severe penalty where a player must throw their shot from the point where their disc last went out of bounds. This can result in a player throwing a much longer shot, which can add significant strokes to their overall score.
It is important to note that each course may have its own unique OB rules and penalties, so it’s essential to review the specific course’s rules before playing.
Tips for Avoiding OB Throws
The best way to avoid OB throws is to stay familiar with the course, understand the OB boundaries, and play within your limits. Some courses may have OB marked on the course map or indicated by a sign. Still, many rely on the surrounding terrain to identify OB.
One useful technique for avoiding OB throws is to throw a less powerful, more controlled shot. This reduces the chances of overthrowing and landing outside of the designated playing area.
Players can also benefit from practicing their sidearm or backhand shots, as different shots can provide more variety and control on the course. Finally, keeping a level head and not letting the fear of OB throws overtake the game will provide a better overall experience.
Mental Strategies for Handling OB Shots
Even the best players will find themselves throwing an OB shot from time to time. The main difference between an experienced player and a novice is how they handle these situations mentally.
The first step is to stay calm and composed. Getting upset or flustered will only lead to more OB throws and a higher score. Focus on the next shot and don’t dwell on past missteps.
It’s also essential to know when to take a more conservative approach. Rather than risking more OB penalties, a player may choose to take the penalty stroke and play from their previous lie. This ensures that the player reduces the risk of adding more strokes to their overall score.
Another useful technique is to visualize successful shots. By visualizing throwing a successful shot before a throw, a player can increase their confidence and reduce the likelihood of an OB throw.
Techniques for Throwing Out of OB
When a player goes out of bounds, they must throw their next shot from the marked OB area. Throwing out of an OB area can be challenging, but some techniques can increase the chances of success.
One common approach is to throw a forehand or backhand hyzer shot. This involves throwing high and to the left for a right-handed player, or right and high for a left-handed player. The disc will then curve to the right for a right-handed player or left for a left-handed player, ideally landing safely back onto the course.
Another approach is to take a more direct approach and focus on throwing with more power and accuracy. This technique is typically used for shorter OB throws and requires excellent aim and a steady hand.
Finally, it’s essential to approach each OB throw with patience. Rather than rushing the next shot, take your time, and ensure that you’re throwing with appropriate power and accuracy.
By focusing on mental strategies and proper techniques, players can approach OB throws with confidence and skill. Throwing out of an OB area is a challenge, but with practice and perseverance, it can be overcome.
When to Play it Safe and Take the Penalty
Playing it safe and taking the penalty stroke is often a smart move when facing an OB shot. It’s crucial to weigh the risks versus the rewards and assess the likelihood of successfully saving a stroke through a difficult shot. In many cases, the safer play may be to take the penalty and move on to the next shot.
At the same time, players should exercise their best judgment and avoid becoming too conservative, leading to low-risk shots and a stalled game.
Making a Comeback After a High OB Score
High OB scores can be discouraging, but it’s important to remember that disc golf is a game of endurance and skill. The best way to make a comeback after a high OB score is to stay focused, patient, and confident in your abilities.
A comeback requires a solid strategy and a sound mind. Take the lessons learned from the high OB score and apply them to future games and situations. Focus on your strengths, and don’t let past mistakes hold you back from future success.
One of the most significant advantages of disc golf is that a single hole or round does not determine the game’s outcome. Instead, players can concentrate on improving over time and achieving their personal best.
In conclusion, understanding OB in disc golf is crucial to success, both physically and mentally. By learning the types of penalties and practicing strategies and techniques for avoiding and overcoming OB throws, players can improve their game and enjoy all the challenges and rewards that disc golf has to offer.