Tuesday, May 7, 2019

What's The Most Dangerous Thing On The Disc Golf Course?


While disc golf is a pretty safe sport in the grand scheme of things, we’ve all encountered our fair share of danger on the course. Getting dehydrated is a real issue when you’re playing during the hot summer months, and unless you’ve prepared adequately, a sunburn likely comes right along with it. People throwing errant shots that hit others can also be a huge hazard, especially if you come into contact with a high-speed driver.

All “WTF Richard?” moments aside, there are some other more natural elements to consider when you’re playing a round of disc golf. Many times the things we’re most focused on include hitting our lines and having fun, but some key considerations need to cross your stream of consciousness, especially during summertime.

Strolling Through The Woods

Not all of the plants you’ll find on the course are your friends, and when you’re playing a heavily wooded course, there’s a good chance that a disc or two will end up in the rough, thus requiring you to go on a bit of a jungle adventure to retrieve it. Being careful where you walk and what plants you touch is a major thing to consider, and sometimes caution needs to come before making sure you leave with all of the plastic you came with.

Poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac are all things that disc golfers have likely encountered at least once, and if you’re not paying attention, you’ll encounter it again. These plants cause a very itchy rash due to the oils that they transfer onto your skin when you rub against them. These rashes can include painful blisters, they are contagious, and can take several weeks to fully go away.

While the three plants do look somewhat similar to each other, they do have some minor differences: poison ivy can grow as a vine or a shrub with leaves that are bright green. Both poison oak and poison sumac look more like shrubs with clusters of leaves, but the most important thing to look for is the number of leaves present; as the saying goes “leaves of three, let them be.”

Teeny Tiny Bugs

Spiders and ants aside, there’s another critter on the disc golf course that should strike even more worry into your heart if you aren’t careful - ticks. These minuscule creatures like to live in the woods, shrubs, and especially tall grassy fields and aren’t afraid to hitch a ride whenever they please. Ticks can find a new home on both you and any furry friends you bring along for a round, so making sure to thoroughly check everyone for ticks afterward is key.

These bugs can give a person Lyme disease with just a single bite and the condition can include a wide range of symptoms that include fatigue, joint pain, fever, and more. Many people battle with Lyme disease for years on end before even getting a diagnosis, so as a disc golfer, it’s important that you are aware of any bodily changes that you experience soon after spending time outdoors.

While these elements are certainly things to keep in mind, don’t let them deter you from heading out to your favorite course and playing a round. After all, while plants and bugs may be the most dangerous thing out there, not having a great time is equally as scary!

For more information on ticks and Lyme disease prevention check out our very own Derek Savory's LymeWarrriorDG site on the subject.
3 comments:
  1. I'm surprised to see no mention of venomous snakes. Here in NC, one is always well-served to be on the lookout for copperheads.

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  2. Playing here in Alaska, we deal with dangerous plants (devil's club, stinging nettles, cow parsnip), widow makers in the spruce, mosquitos, unfavourable weather, and bears. The most dangerous in my opinion though is angry moose. They are regularly on the course and pay little heed to players and will charge if annoyed it frightened. Despite the dangers, disc golf in Alaska is fantastic!

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  3. Cops. Hiding behind trees and in bushes watching you, hoping to catch you doing something bad and ruin your life.

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