Disc Golf Course Review Arm Speed vs Rim Width
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#1
02-03-2020, 11:44 PM
 cHildebrandt Newbie Join Date: Oct 2019 Location: Edmonton, Alberta. Posts: 19 Niced 1 Time in 1 Post
Arm Speed vs Rim Width

Hey peeps,

So, I've only been playing since April 2019, I have quickly developed my backhand, started extremely forehand dominant.

Was at a friend's house a couple weeks ago and decided to check backhand arm speed.

I discovered that I have a 53mph backhand, and a 57mph forehand. Not bad? Maybe?

So, my question is, what is release velocities direct comparison to rim width (10/11/12 speed)?

The highest speed driver I bag aside from my Headwind fighter Force is the Anax, Musket, and Avenger SS. I'm extremely comfortable with them but sometimes wonder if a guy couldn't get a consistent flight out of a Wraith?

I don't like the whole max distance/35 = Rim speed because I've flipped a brand new Zeus to flat, which is more the RPM at release, is it not?

Sooooooo many physics questions. Oi vey.

Anyways, thanks in advance if anyone has any Mph/Rim Width correspondence.

Colin
#2
02-04-2020, 01:20 PM
 curmudgeonDwindle Birdie Member Join Date: Apr 2012 Location: CLT Years Playing: 40.5 Courses Played: 20 Throwing Style: LHBH Posts: 306 Niced 184 Times in 99 Posts

I'm certain that others will contradict me, so take what is said with a grain of salt.

Flight numbers are a heuristic which attempt to describe the flight performance of a disc. I have always taken 'speed' to mean the foil's rough efficiency when thrown at it's 'optimal' velocity. The higher the disc's speed, the more 'efficient' the foil and the more velocity required to throw it 'properly'.

Relative to armspeed, I've taken this to mean that one must be able to generate enough armspeed to get the disc to fly 'as intended', 'as advertised' or 'as Simon does', which is one good reason why, in general, the less experienced the player, slower disc speeds are recommended, as technical mastery increases a player's 'speed envelope'.

Underlying your question are two basic approaches about throwing discs in golf; every golf shot falls somewhere along the continuum generated by these 2 approaches ('opposites').
1. Use primarily your throwing skill to shape lines.
2. Change the disc thrown to shape the line.

fwiw

 Niced: (1)

Last edited by curmudgeonDwindle; 02-04-2020 at 01:24 PM. Reason: addition
#3
02-04-2020, 02:10 PM
 Ryan P. Double Eagle Member Join Date: Mar 2008 Location: Asheboro, NC Years Playing: 13.9 Courses Played: 60 Posts: 1,714 Niced 68 Times in 42 Posts

Great question. I'll agree with curmudgeon's ideas. "Properly" means "intended at that speed. The manufacturers are not testing it against a certain speed. The speed of the disc is determined by the shape (mainly the width) of the rim. So a speed 11 disc has a little over a 2cm wide rim in general.

With that said, someone may well have researched enough to know what arm speed roughly corresponds to what disc speed. That's just not the point of disc speed ratings because the manufacturers aren't trying to sell people discs based on their arm speed (since very few people know it). I'm sure it'd help to know how it corresponds, and I'm interested in the answer to your question. The closest thing I can think of is watching Central Coast Disc Golf's videos from the Tour tourneys last year. They will generally say what disc someone throws, show how fast it's thrown, and you can obviously watch the flight.

Also, you mentioned your ability to "flip a Zeus to flat" as a basis to throw faster discs as they were intended. That assumes your form is good. I'm not saying your form is bad (that'd be ridiculous as I've never seen you throw), but I don't know either way. If you're confident your form is good, then yes, you're roughly correct in saying that flipping a disc is related to RPMs. I'd suggest more YouTubing for this: the "Physics of Flight" Video Series.

If you're considering moving up in speed, I'd get a newish disc in premium plastic at the new speed with a turn of -1. If you can throw the disc flat, with no wobble, in no wind, and it has a distinct turn to it (i.e. not it moved a foot left to right but something that you can see), then you can generally throw discs at that speed. The trouble would be making sure you're throwing it flat with no wobble when there's no wind.

With all that said, there are plenty of people (myself included) who have purposely not throw discs as fast as they could for an extended period of time in order to improve their form, and many of them agree that it does improve form. So don't rush into faster discs.

#4
02-04-2020, 02:40 PM
 DiscJunkie * Ace Member * Join Date: Oct 2008 Location: Wilmington, NC Years Playing: 11.8 Courses Played: 40 Throwing Style: LHBH Posts: 4,542 Niced 555 Times in 238 Posts

Vibram showed the expected speed at release on the underside of its discs.
Seems like that would be more helpful than the present system, although I doubt the release speed will be used again anytime soon.