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Old 04-14-2021, 03:09 PM
Jrspvsurf Jrspvsurf is offline
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Lightbulb Question About Being A Spotter

I'm volunteering as a sponsor for an upcoming NT event. So I'm scheduled to be spotting for 12 hours. Here's the question:

Assuming it would have no impact on the players, during the down time or time when there aren't players on the course, can we play the hole while waiting?

Also, any advice for a first time spotter? Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2021, 03:11 PM
Sethamphetamine Sethamphetamine is offline
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Not sure if a rule exists but I doubt it. Flow at tournaments is so slow there’s not really an open hole hole ever.

Advice: bring a chair and bug spray and umbrella.

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Old 04-14-2021, 03:32 PM
BillFleming BillFleming is offline
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No. Normally courses are closed to any play except for the tournament.

Advice from a spotter...
#1 YOU only provide an extra set of eyes. YOU are not the deciding voice. If the player doesn't agree with your spot, remind them that they can discuss it with their card mates for a final decision - and then step away, but stay close in case they need to ask you something about the spot. ((The only time YOU are the deciding factor is if the TD designated you as a Rules Official for the tournament)).

Do not take offense if the card disagrees with your spot and moves the mark.

It helps to have a copy of the tournament rules in case there is a question. The players should have it, but don't always. You having a copy can save time as a TD doesn't need called to make a decision.

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Old 04-14-2021, 03:41 PM
BillFleming BillFleming is offline
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Additionally about playing a hole during a tournament. You are a volunteer, you don't want to do something that would poorly reflect on the tournament. A player on another fairway might see you playing the hole and ask the TD why a volunteer is playing on the hole.

It might be the same as volunteers shouldn't be asking players for signatures during the tournament.

But....just ask the TD at the beginning if it is permitted.

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Old 04-14-2021, 04:53 PM
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BogeyNoMore BogeyNoMore is offline
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Bill made several excellent points.


As a long time spotter for USADGC and DGLO, to answer the OP directly: IMHO playing a hole during the event is at the very least, in poor taste. Depending on the TD, they might even send you home, but I'd think a warning should be all that's needed.

Bring chair/stool, plenty of water, sunscreen, bugspray, snacks. Ask TD if they will provide lunch for volunteers/spotters. Some events do, some don't.

Under no circumstances touch anyone's disc.

Make sure you watch ALL players on the card throw. Don't go off chasing bad shots away from the fairway until each player throws. You don't want to miss the 3rd players throw because you were searching for the 2nd player's disc. Just get mental fix on some landmark so you have a good idea where to search after the card has thrown.

If spotting a hole with really dense rough, LISTEN when a disc leaves the fairway. You'd be surprised how the different sounds of discs hitting foliage, branches, ground... can help you get close to the spot when you have to wait for the rest of the card to throw.

Be friendly, but professional. Read the mood of the card and be aware of the situation.

If there's tall grass off where a disc lands, but not likely for a disc to get lost, spot it anyway. In addition to putting players on lost discs, a good spotter improves pace of play by putting players on their discs sooner.

I like to give players a friendly warning when their lie is thorny or around poison ivy.

The TD or staff should also give you some instruction. That should supersede anything else.

Have fun! It's a blast watching some of the best in the game compete up close and personal. Most players genuinely appreciate your being there to help.


Last edited by BogeyNoMore; 04-14-2021 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 04-14-2021, 05:05 PM
BillFleming BillFleming is offline
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also, don't be upset if you don't see their disc. I was spotting a hole and I never saw the disc after it left the player's hand until it hit the branch above my head. If you don't see it and you might be in the "line of flight", crouch down and listen for it. The players assume you see their disc and may not yell fore.

Lastly, (maybe) ask the TD what you need to do when 'bathroom' time comes around. Some TDs have volunteers "patrolling" the course and checking in with spotters to see if they need a break or anything else. But make sure you know what is expected of you.

And go to YouTube, do a search on "disc golf spotting" and watch some of those.

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Old 04-14-2021, 08:40 PM
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Such nice posts....

Extending your arm and keeping your pointer finger and tracking from release is a personal fetish for spotting. Feel free to move after disc is in the air to get a better look. Players are called ‘thrower 1, 2, 3, 4’ from their tee off order if I need to speak or respond. A lot of disc golfers not memorable 5 minutes later when first seen from a couple hundred feet away.

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Old 04-15-2021, 01:32 AM
Jrspvsurf Jrspvsurf is offline
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This is great advice. Much appreciated. Love playing, but have not had the opportunity to see a live event yet so I was not sure what to expect.

I will be sure to keep your advice in mind.
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Old 04-15-2021, 01:37 AM
Jrspvsurf Jrspvsurf is offline
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Thanks for the thoughtful response. I am thrilled to go and am naive to being at a live event. I especially like the point on remaining still until everyone has thrown.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BogeyNoMore View Post
Bill made several excellent points.


As a long time spotter for USADGC and DGLO, to answer the OP directly: IMHO playing a hole during the event is at the very least, in poor taste. Depending on the TD, they might even send you home, but I'd think a warning should be all that's needed.

Bring chair/stool, plenty of water, sunscreen, bugspray, snacks. Ask TD if they will provide lunch for volunteers/spotters. Some events do, some don't.

Under no circumstances touch anyone's disc.

Make sure you watch ALL players on the card throw. Don't go off chasing bad shots away from the fairway until each player throws. You don't want to miss the 3rd players throw because you were searching for the 2nd player's disc. Just get mental fix on some landmark so you have a good idea where to search after the card has thrown.

If spotting a hole with really dense rough, LISTEN when a disc leaves the fairway. You'd be surprised how the different sounds of discs hitting foliage, branches, ground... can help you get close to the spot when you have to wait for the rest of the card to throw.

Be friendly, but professional. Read the mood of the card and be aware of the situation.

If there's tall grass off where a disc lands, but not likely for a disc to get lost, spot it anyway. In addition to putting players on lost discs, a good spotter improves pace of play by putting players on their discs sooner.

I like to give players a friendly warning when their lie is thorny or around poison ivy.

The TD or staff should also give you some instruction. That should supersede anything else.

Have fun! It's a blast watching some of the best in the game compete up close and personal. Most players genuinely appreciate your being there to help.
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Old 04-15-2021, 09:28 AM
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BogeyNoMore BogeyNoMore is offline
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Don't forget to silence your phone.

You don't wanna get the stinkeye cuz you got a robocall or text while some player is lining up their C2 birdie putt.

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