Ultimate Frisbee – The Sport, The Spirit, The Injuries

Ultimate, shortened from its previous name “Ultimate Frisbee,” is a team 7 on 7 sport played on a field slightly smaller than a football field. Players use a plastic disc (what most people outside the sport call a “Frisbee”). The ultimate goal is to pass the disc between teammates to work down the field in order to catch the disc in the end-zone and score a point. Much like other sports such as lacrosse, football, or soccer, the goal of the defending team is to force the other team to drop the disc or go out of bounds for a turnover so that they can move the disc down in the opposite direction to score.

Watch the video below for another description and video of actual play!

A more unique aspect to the sport of Ultimate is that it is self-officiated at all levels including professional games. This feature has helped develop a strong sense of sportsmanship referred to in the sport as the “spirit of the game”. This has greatly limited the amount of taunting and foul play in the sport, keeping it clean and welcoming to those of all skill levels.

As with all sports, an unfortunate part of Ultimate is the presence of sport related injuries. Ankle and knee injuries are most common due to frequent cutting and jumping/landing. With significant sprains and strains, it is important to not only rehab these appropriately, but additionally address any underlying weaknesses or form issues that may be putting you at increased risk. This is where working closely with a physical therapist and/or getting involved in our Academy for Sports and Wellness can help you achieve optimal recovery and spend more time on the field, and less on the sidelines.

Looking to get into Ultimate? It is a great way to stay active and join an extremely welcoming and fun community. Many local elementary schools, high schools, and colleges in the greater Grand Rapids area have teams and ways to participate. There are also recreational leagues which is how I have gotten involved in the sport!

Interested in learning more about our Academy? Visit our page here.

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