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Sound odd? but I felt this way the other day. Granted I was working on my technique earlier in the day . But when I went out to play a round, that's all I could think about. So after 12 holes, I just quit and headed over to a nearby field and worked on my drives for about an hour and then headed of to the practice baskets for an hour or so of putting.

I had more fun that day working on my game than I did playing. So I was wondering if anybody else ever felt this way?

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One thing that I've noticed in all areas of sports is that the good players play a lot, but the truly great players don't. They spend hours and hours practicing, though. Practice is a given.

Consistent putting practice is always a great thing. Field practice is great for those of us who still struggle with our driving, but throwing a disc fast and straight across an open field isn't going to do much for the better players out there. Driving practice for the more experienced usually means going out to that tricky 250' hole and driving it again and again until you nail it every time.

Playing lots of rounds builds skill, that much cannot be argued with, but practicing all of your different shots is going to make you a better golfer, no doubts about it. Something practice is going to help very much is your game on different courses. Playing your home course over and over again is going to make you very dialed-in on those holes and will build your skills, but to a lesser extent.

Are there a lot of good players that don't practice? Yes. The great players, however, always do. If you don't practice, you can be good, very good, but you'll never realize your full potential. Some simply are having too much fun to care about getting better. Disc golf is a game, love it; play it the way you want to. If you want to be competitive, though, practice is a commandment, not an option.

I am very competitive when I play but I don't "practice" the way you describe it. My "practice is done in rounds where I play either in doubles or singles matches. In that case I have to always deal with the mental aspect of the game, the kind of thing that you often see professional ball golfers deal with. How do you respond when you are behind? What do you do when you are ahead? Those are the mental aspects of the game and putting to a practice basket will not help you with those things. Only playing will help you learn how to deal with those situations when they arise. Playing gives you the experience necessary to deal with those situations. It allows you to never give up and keep pushing until the end. That is what makes a true champion. Case in point - Tiger Woods finally won again on the PGA tour. It was basically him and Zach Johnson dueling it out to the end. Tiger birdied the 17th hole to tie it up and then birdied the 18th for the win. Johnson had just birdied the 16th to tie it all up and had the momentum. Tiger never gave up and he knew what he had to do for the win. Now I know that he also engages in many hours of physical practice as well. He wouldn't be where he is without doing that. But he needed that mental training to stay focused and win. And that comes from playing many rounds against competitors.

 

Now I am a long ways from being a professional ball golfer or even being someone who wins a bunch of disc golf tourneys. But I am still very competitive in the local scene. I am 51, know all of my shots and how to throw them. It is just a matter of executing those shots when called upon to do so. And honestly, ball golf is much more difficult than disc golf. There is a whole different level of complexity in ball golf. So I plan on sticking with my routine which involves casual rounds, singles matches (sometimes for money) and league play. I'm not going to be the next Climo anyway. I just don't have the arm strength.

I realize that my last response was quite long but I have one more point to make. You can say that great players practice a lot but that doesn't prove that the practice is what makes them great. It only proves that great players are in the habit of practicing. In order to say that great players are great because of practice you would have to study someone for say a year where they practiced and then study them for say a year where they only played rounds and then compare the data. I know of no such study so a statement like that is only an unproved supposition. You could just as well say that great players have great natural talent.

worst argument against practice ever made.

It's called causation. You can't just attribute something to one thing simply because of the end result. If you want to make the case that practice is what makes great players great then you have to prove it in some way. Just saying that great players practice doesn't prove anything. It's like saying that great players eat and go to the bathroom. Of course that is true, but that doesn't make them great players.

 

I would not disagree that for some players practice outside of rounds can make a difference. I just don't believe that it is universal. 

practice and play as if you have to kill the basket and eat it to survive.

I heard a good one the other day. This guy says "Practice makes perfect". But then he says that is wrong and instead "Perfect practice makes perfect". In other words you have to find the practice that works for you. Just because practicing a certain way works for player X doesn't mean that exactly the same thing will work for me or anyone else. We are all motivated by different things and we have to choose what works for us.

 

"Practice and play as if you have to kill the basket and eat it to survive ". This sounds good.

You have contributed quite a bit to this forum. Eat Basket!

No, that's not what it means. Practice is drill....putting, throwing, approaching, executing the skills of the sport over & over. "Perfect practice" means that you are using proper technique when you are in the field or back yard putting, not that it might not be right for everybody.

 

 

Playing nothing but rounds is a lot like going to the gym and running for two minutes, benching 100 lbs., doing seven push-ups, doing three chin-ups, swimming one lap, jumping rope eight times, and jogging up one flight of steps. Will you get better? Sure......Eventually..... It's simply not as efficient as a good practice regimen.

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