If You Hit the Pole of a Hole in Disc Golf – Does It Count?

When we first played disc golf, our primary goal was to make sure our discs get into these target baskets, and that’s it. However, as our gameplay progressed over the years, we started to consider more of the rules and observe the proper scoring of the game.

For the score to be considered, players must insert the disc through the basket’s side. This disc must also be above the cage. Additionally, it must land in the basket supported solely by the chains, the middle pole, or the cage interior. Therefore, a disc landing atop a basket or getting wedged into the cage’s side does not qualify. This is primarily the case with soft putters.

What is Considered “In the Basket” in Disc Golf?

Disc golf had its early beginnings in the 1970s as a leisurely sport, played with rules similar to traditional golf. This sport was played across a wide area of land with shrubs and trees.

This land has a layout of numerous holes, and the primary goal of disc golf is to utilize the least number of strokes, in each round, in an attempt to shoot the target baskets. This can be tougher than what one might expect.

Each throw must insert the disc through the basket’s side and above the cage for the hole to be considered complete as per the game’s general rules. Players must be able to insert the disc through the side of the basket for the score to be calculated. Additionally, the players must aim this disc above the cage.

It must also land into the basket that is entirely supported by the chains, the center pole, or the cage interior. Given this, the disc does not qualify if it gets stuck into the cage’s side.

Additionally, we don’t count the putt if the disc collides with the chains holding the basket but does not enter the basket.

This means if your putt or disc strikes the metal pole, makes contact with the basket, or simply bounces out, the player has to make another throw. This time, he or she has to hit the target properly to consider it as “in the basket” and the hole as “completed.”

With that said, when a player throws down their putt or disk down the fairway, they must throw their next shot from the location of their last throw. The trees, shrubbery, and other natural forms that border and surround the fairway contribute as obstacles to the game.

While it poses a challenge if a player can land their disc in the basket or chains, the hole is considered complete, and the player can then proceed.

Proper Legal Stances in Disc Golf

There are no disc golf-specific rules in terms of stances, particularly when it comes to the normal throwing stance. For that, you should be familiar with the official Professional Disc Golf Association rules regarding proper throwing stances.

To begin, understand that your lie starts from where your disc previously landed. Technically, it measures 20cm wide by 30cm deep, or 7.8 inches wide by 11.8 inches. To begin, draw a line directly from the center of your disc to the basket. The lie would then be at the center of that line from the initial point.

You may substitute a mini marker at the front edge of the disc in place of the actual disc. However, you must have only one body part situated inside the lie.

Moreover, you should not have any other body parts balancing you outside the lie. This also means that you cannot lean against shrubbery or tree limbs close to the basket.

Additionally, this entails leaning back against a tree is legal as long as you maintain balance with only one foot within the lie. Because your lie is on the ground, you cannot make your throw from a tree before balancing in your ground lie.

Hitting Another Player’s Bag

Aside from the rules mentioned above, there are also specific rules if your disc hits another player’s back. For example, if your disc collides with another player’s bag or pocket, you must play your shot where it is. The player whose bag was hit will be awarded a courtesy violation.

Also, a penalty shot may be given for the player’s second courtesy violation. In this case, the tournament official evaluates if the throw was a deliberate attempt to obstruct another player’s throw or serve as a distraction.

Nevertheless, the Professional Disc Golf Association rules do not expressly penalize you for hitting another player’s kit. However, you can still be accused of inappropriate play or improper conduct once you do not allow for equipment to be moved while in a fair play area.

If your disc makes contact with your own bag, you must play the shot on the area where it lies. Failure to abide by this means you will get a penalty shot.

By then, you are responsible for demanding that other players transfer their items if you believe your disc could strike them. If the player declines, it is deemed a breach of courtesy.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, even if your disc hits any part of the target – whether it’s the basket, the chains, or the pole, it will still not be qualified.

A hole can only be considered “completed” once your disk enters the target entirely. Even with the impact, the player will still be required to make another throw to complete the hole.

With that, the player is required to observe a proper stance, with one body part in the lie used for balancing, to qualify the shot as ethical and proper. Once this particular hole is completed, the player can then proceed to the next target in the layout.

Disc golf can be a fun and enjoyable sport for many, but to fully maximize what this game has to offer, it’s best to understand its rules.