Overstable vs Understable Discs: How To Choose Disc Golf Turn Rating

Turn and Disc Stability in Disc Golf

What Do ‘Turn’ and ‘Stability’ Mean in Disc Golf?

If you’ve ever been staring at a disc golf website completely overwhelmed and unsure what disc to buy, I wrote this for you.

But wait – if you are a visual learner (or just hate reading like I do), this incredibly detailed video explains this article better than I can write it:

To get good at disc golf, you need to understand a few things about how the disc moves when you throw it. One of the biggest factor is the disc’s ‘turn rating’ – the third of four numbers usually stamped on the disc.

Turn rating on a disc golf discs

When we talk about turn in disc golf, we’re talking about how the disc moves at high speed right after you throw it. 

It’s actually pretty simple.

Discs can be ‘overstable,’ which means they curve to the left, or ‘understable,’ which means they curve to the right before eventually fading back to the left as they slow down.

How Does the Flight Number System Work?

In disc golf, we use a number system to understand how a disc will fly. The first disc number is speed. The second is the glide rating. The third number in this system tells us about the disc’s ‘turn.’ So, this number can help us know if a disc will curve to the left or right when we throw it.

Overstable vs Understable: How Do They Fly?

Imagine you have two discs: one that curves to the right (understable) and one that curves to the left (overstable). If you throw both discs at the same speed, let’s say as fast as a car going down a highway (60 miles per hour), the disc that curves to the right might fly just to the right. But the overstable disc that curves to the left will need to be thrown faster to follow the same flight path.

Should I throw Overstable or Understable Discs?

When you’re trying to decide which disc to use, you have to think about two things: how far you want the disc to go and how you want the disc to move when you throw it.

Let’s say you can throw the disc 60 mph, and you pick a disc that curves just right at that speed. You might be able to throw the disc really far, but if the wind is blowing hard or you throw the disc extra hard, it might curve too much and go somewhere you didn’t want it to go.

On the other hand, if you choose a disc that only curves just right if you throw it as fast as a car on a highway (80 miles per hour), which is faster than you can throw, you might not be able to throw it as far. But it will be easier to control where the disc goes.

How Do You Make the Right Choice?

Choosing the right disc depends on a lot of things. You have to think about how fast you can throw, how the wind is blowing, and where you want the disc to land. It’s not always easy, but with practice, you’ll get the hang of it. So keep practicing, and you’ll become a master of disc golf in no time!

Make sure to check out these other articles on what discs top pros use, and this MVP driver review!

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