Disc Golf in New Zealand

What is Disc Golf?

For the official PDGA rule book, click here

The Drive

The Approach

The Putt

The ??!?!?!?

What is Disc Golf?

Disc golf is played much like traditional golf. Instead of a ball and clubs, however, players use a flying disc, or Frisbee® The sport was formalized in the 1970's, and shares with "ball golf" the object of completing each hole in the fewest number of strokes (or, in the case of disc golf, fewest number of throws).

Disc golf New Zealand

We've seen some crazy golf bags in our days, but this is a serious one.

A golf disc is thrown from a tee area to a target which is the "hole". the hole can be one of a number of disc golf targets; the most common is called a Pole Hole® an elevated metal basket. As a player progresses down the fairway, he or she must make each consecutive shot from the spot where the previous throw has landed.

The trees, shrubs, and terrain changes located in and around the fairways provide challenging obstacles for the golfer. Finally, the "putt" lands in the basket and the hole is completed. Disc golf shares the same joys and frustrations of traditional golf, whether it's sinking a long putt or hitting a tree halfway down the fairway.

There are few differences, though. Disc golf rarely requires a greens fee, you probably won't need to rent a cart, and you never get stuck with a bad "tee time." It is designed to be enjoyed by people of all ages, male and female, regardless of economic status.

Who Plays Disc Golf?

Disc golf can be played from school age to old age, making it the one of the greatest lifetime fitness sports available. Specially-abled and disabled participate, giving them the opportunity to take part in a mainstream activity. Because disc golf is so easy to learn, no one is excluded. Players merely match their pace to their capabilities, and proceed from there. New Zealand's Disc Golf events cater for men and women of every skill level from novice to professional. Permanent disc golf courses are found in countries worldwide, as well as throughout New Zealand.

Where do I play?

The struggle to get permanent courses in New Zealand's main cities and towns is forever ongoing, but some town and city parks have golf courses already set up. All are free to play as often as you like. Disc golfers who do not have the benefit of a permanent disc golf facility in their area often "make up" object courses in nearby parks and green spaces. Keep an eye on our Courses in New Zealand section which is constantly being updated (and having new courses added we are very pleased to note!)

One of the great features disc golf shares with traditional golf is that they are both played in beautiful settings. A nine-hole disc golf course can be established on as little as two hectares of land, and a championship-caliber 18-hole course on 12 to 16 hectares. Disc golf courses can coexist with existing park facilities and activity areas. The ideal location combines wooded and open terrains, and a variety of topographical change.

The need for more courses is constant, as the sport continues to grow in popularity. The PDGA has created standards for the design and installation of new golf courses, to ensure their success in the community. And Gentil Sport, who run this website have ready-made proposals for you to put forward to councils and land owners so just drop us a line if you need help.

Why should I play?

The ongoing fitness boom finds more and more people taking up recreational activities in an effort to improve health and quality of life. Disc golf provides upper and lower body conditioning, aerobic exercise, and promotes a combination of physical and mental abilities that allow very little risk of physical injury. Concentration skills increase by mastering shots and negotiating obstacles. Players of limited fitness levels can start slowly and gradually increase their level of play as fitness improves. Scheduling is also flexible; a round takes one to two hours, and may be played alone, eliminating the difficulty of scheduling tee times. And as in traditional golf, disc golfers find themselves "hooked;" increasing the likelihood of frequent participation. Disc golf offers year-round fitness, even in rain or snow. Perhaps the greatest attribute of the sport is the expense - or rather, the lack of it. A professional quality disc costs less than $30, and it only takes one for basic play.

And, of course, there's the sheer fun of the game - no matter what your age or skill level!


"Do you want a line" or "Can you give me a line"

Do NOT jump to conclusions ..it's all about the need to know where the basket / target is when a player is unsighted.

"Who's up me?"

Don't panic...it just needs some grammar ("Who's up? Me?"), and refers to who throws next.

A 'Jim Putt'.

A putt that doesn't spin, wobbles as it moves through the air, and normally misses. A variation of the Freaky Styley Fat Tyre Boyz motto: "Don't follow Jim".

"Nice Pull !"

A complement on a good drive...... nothing else.

"What are you on?"

The answer to this question is not "acid", it is in fact, your score.

R.O. !

This is normally called on the last hole in casual play. 'Reverse Order' is a good way of finding out what every one in the group is on, prior to playing the last hole. And, as the term implies, the highest score tees off first (opposite to normal tee order).

"Shall we toss off ?"

This relates to every one tossing or flipping a disc on the first tee to decide who goes first. A variation on a coin toss, it's as simple as that, OK? Golf discs have many purposes outside the game: great for dice throwing games such a Schtung and who needs camping plates when you have your Frisbee?!

"Hold on, there's a 'Bunker' in the way !"

Don't throw yet, there is a person within hitting range (which in Jim's case encompasses a 160 degree arc).

If it had gone in it would have been good !"

Looked good ....... but missed !

Lost Disc! (or LD!)

This has numerous meanings .. ie. if you're playing with 'the beast' he's just misplaced a disc ... or maybe even his bag. But in most cases everyone needs to head into the bushes for the mandatory 3 minutes.

A 'Freaky Styley !'

The Auckland Club call this when trying to negate an over 2 meter penalty. One throw and a one handed, no body trap catch ... pull that off and you don't have to add an OB stroke. Not one to call in competition, unless you're the legendary Juan 'Disc-qualifed Again' Unda.

"Nice lay-up!"

Normally said rather sarcastically after a putt lands at the base of the basket.

Basic Disc Golf rules to remember

Don't cheat .... if it landed there, that's exactly where your foot must be for your next shot. You can step out to the side, but no closer to the hole.

If you want to touch the disc you just threw, put a marker down before you touch it. Likewise for getting a disc out of a tree, mark it directly underneath before you try and get it down. This is a good habit to get into as it's compulsory in a tournament.

Within 10 meters of the target, you MUST regain your balance before stepping towards the hole. If you don't it's classified as a 'falling putt', you'll be warned once and the next time it will cost you a shot.
Respect other players ... It's good to be quiet while other players are playing.

Respect the park ... If you come across some rubbish, pick it up, try and leave the environment better than when you arrived.

Respect other park users ...Golf discs could cause serious damage, if there is someone even vaguely in the way DON'T THROW. Send a spotter or change the hole for the sake of that round.