Can You Play Disc Golf With One Disc?

Someone new to disc golf asked me recently if they could play disc golf with only one disc. I’ve come across this question many times, in fact, when I started playing disc golf, I asked my friends the same question.

So, can you play disc golf with only one disc? Yes, you can play disc golf with only one disc, especially if you’re just playing for fun; however, if you want to play a more serious game, you’ll have more versatility with a wider range of discs to throw. 

Playing with only one disc is a great way to simplify things and focus on getting acclimated to the game. It allows you to focus on your form and how the disc flies.

Ideally, you’ll want to choose a disc that is good in a wide variety of situations. It can be confusing with so many discs out there, so let’s break it down.

What disc to choose?

Most brand new players will automatically go for the driver, but this poses some problems when playing with only one disc. Drivers are meant for distance but they tend to be much more difficult to throw accurately, especially for new players. Putting with a driver is also not recommended. Drivers are meant to fly a long way, so if you miss the cage, you’ll most likely miss long and have a more difficult second putt.

I recommend starting with a mid range disc. You’ll still be able to drive for a good distance and you’ll be throwing a more stable disc, which will help you refine your form. When it comes time to putt, a mid range disc will still have enough weight and stability to keep the disc from flying way off course if you miss.

Below I’ve put a list of my favorite mid range discs for beginners that won’t break the bank (I’ll make them links so you can get the best price):

These are all great options for mid range discs. I can recommend all of these for beginners and advanced players as they are all reliable, proven discs that appeal to a wide range of players.

How common is it to play with only one disc?

It’s definitely more common to see people playing with multiple discs rather than one disc. In my experience, players tend to amass a small collection of discs that they’ve found work for them. In my case, I first purchased a disc golf starter pack that came with a driver, a mid range and a putter. I then expanded my collection from those three as I became more familiar with the game.

Though it’s most common too see people with quite a few discs, it’s not uncommon to see people playing with only one or two discs. In fact, there is a group of guys I see every weekend that power through the entire course with only one disc each – almost like they’re playing speed disc golf.

I wouldn’t let the commonality of it bother you though. If you’re not comfortable playing with many discs and you’ve found one disc that you love to play with. Play with that disc. I’ve been playing for years, and for quite a while, I played with only two discs while everyone I played with had a whole bad of discs that they carried around.

Pros to playing with only one disc

First and foremost, playing with only one disc is great for developing your form. Discs have a wide range of flight paths from the power you need to throw them, to the fade and weight and flight path. There’s so much to consider and switching between many different discs when you’re learning to play makes it very difficult to identify when you’re throwing well and when you’re not. Work with only one disc in the beginning and get to a point where you can throw that disc accurately on a consistent basis, then move on to more discs.

Second, playing with one disc and an inexpensive way to play the game. Discs can range from $10-$25 depending on where you get them so the cost can add up quickly. If you end up with 10 discs in your bag, that’s an easy $100-$250 when you could easily play the whole course for the cost of one mid range disc which would cost about $12.

It’s less weight. It’s not uncommon to see players with large bags or strollers full of discs that they play with. That style of play works for a lot of people, however, some players like to play light. Less discs means less baggage and one disc is about as light as you can go.

Cons to playing with only one disc

One of the cons of playing with only one disc is that you may lose your only disc. If the course you’re playing at has a creek or river running through it, you may throw your disc in the water accidentally. If you’re a new player, it’s pretty easy to lose a disc in the water since you won’t have the skill to throw your disc as well as other players. Once you lose that one disc, you won’t be able to play anymore unless you’ve got a pal that will lend you a disc to play with.

Another con is that you don’t get practice using other discs. A mid range disc will fly well in most situations, but there’s a reason why we have drivers and putters. Those discs are great at driving and putting. Replacing them with a mid range disc gets the job done, but if you want to up your game, you’ll want to invest in at least one of each type of disc.

Ready to throw more discs?

If you’ve been throwing one disc for a while and you feel like you’ve got a good feel for your disc and how to play the game, it may be time to try out some more discs. The best way to do this is to try throwing some friends’ discs.

Chances are that you’ve been playing with a group of friends. I would encourage you to ask your friends what discs they like to throw and see if they’ll let you try throwing those discs. This is a great way to try discs before you decide to purchase them. Don’t be surprised if the disc flies very different when you throw the disc as opposed to when they’ve thrown it. Most people have different form when they throw and so the disc will often times fly very differently depending on who’s throwing it.

Another option is to do a little research online. Most of the companies that make discs have some great information online about their discs and how they fly. If you’re looking for a specific flight path or style disc, this is a great place to start. You can learn all about the different types of discs and what’s out there for you to try. Once you get started, you may end up with a whole list of interesting discs you want to buy and try out.

Finally, you could always pick up a disc golf starter pack. They typically come with a putter, a mid range and a driver and the discs tend to be very well balanced. This is the option I chose when I first started playing the game is and worked out great until I was ready to try something new.

To sum up

If you’re an experience player and you’re still playing with only one disc, I would challenge you to try using multiple discs and get a feel for how the different types of discs fly. Trying out many different types of discs add versatility to your game along with giving you the opportunity to find the best discs for your throwing style.

If you’re a brand new player, however, I recommend starting out with just one disc. Play a few games with only a mid range disk and see how it helps your game.