What Is A Birdie in Disc Golf

What Is A Birdie in Disc Golf? A Beginner’s Guide 2024

Disc golf is an increasingly popular sport combining traditional and frisbee throwing elements. It has increased recently, with courses all over the country. 

If you are new to the game, you might wonder, “What is a birdie in disc golf?” This post will give you a beginner’s guide to understanding the terminology.

Whether you’re looking to play with friends or as a competitive sport, we’ll help you understand the basics so you can get out there and enjoy the game.

Let’s dive into the details!

What Is a Birdie in Disc Golf?

A birdie is a term used in disc golf to refer to a score of one stroke under par. 

This means that if the hole is par three, the player has scored two strokes to get the disc into the basket. 

To know more about birdie, we need to know about stroke and par. The first term is a stroke referring to throwing the disc in disc golf. 

The basic technique involves:

  • Gripping the disc with the throwing hand.
  • Stepping forward with the opposite foot.
  • Transferring weight onto the forward foot as you throw the disc with a wrist flick. 

More advanced players may employ different grips, stances, and throwing styles depending on the desired trajectory and distance of the throw. 

Its goal is to land the disc in the target basket with as few strokes as possible, similar to traditional golf.

 Stroke is the throwing of the disc
Stroke is the throwing of the disc.

The second term “par” is a player’s fixed number of throws to complete a hole or an entire disc golf course. 

This serves as a gauge for the difficulty of a given hole or course. Once one becomes more proficient in the sport, reaching par is generally achievable. 

Accordingly, to achieve par on any given hole, we must score three on a par-3 hole, four on a par-4 hole, and five on a par-5 spot. 

If one manages to match the total par score for the course (i.e., the par scores of all the holes added together), one would have achieved par for the system.

To say again, a birdie is a score of one stroke under par.

Par is a player's predetermined number of throws to finish a hole
Par is a player’s predetermined number of throws to finish a hole.

How Can Birdies Help You on the Course?

Scoring birdies can be helpful for players on the disc golf course in several ways. 

  • Firstly, a birdie helps a player to reduce their overall score for the round, which is the sum of all the throws they make on each hole. 
  • Secondly, birdies can give players confidence and a sense of achievement, motivating them to continue playing well throughout the round. 
  • Additionally, suppose a player scores a birdie on a hole that other players in their group do not. It can give them a competitive advantage and increase their chances of winning the round or tournament. 
  • Finally, birdies can be very satisfying for players who enjoy the challenge of the sport and want to test their skills against the course. 

In order to succeed in disc golf, one must have the lowest score on the course. 

Therefore, habitual success in achieving birdies on each hole is essential for attaining the desired low score (ideally in the negatives). 

Birdies can significantly contribute to victory in the rounds, however, their acquisition requires dedication and a high level of performance.

Birdie can contribute to the victory of the game
Birdie can contribute to the victory of the game.

The Origin of Birdie

The term ‘birdie’ originates in ball golf, as do many of the terms used in disc golf. The manner of play, aiming to score on par or better, is taken from ball golf. 

Only some are aware, however, of the word actual inception. It is a fascinating story, beginning in 1903 on a New Jersey golf course. 

Abner Smith made a superb shot and proposed to his friends that those who played a hole-in-one below par should receive a double reward. 

People accepted his suggestion, and the birdie was born. It quickly spread across the United States, all from one club in Atlantic City.

It is unknown exactly when disc golf began to use the term “birdie”; however, people speculate that it originated in 1926 when some boys from Canada commenced playing Tin Lid Golf. 

To this day, the birdie is an integral component of the game, often determining the victor.

The term stems from ball golf
The term stems from ball golf.

How to Play the Course Better and Make Every Birdie?

Golf is challenging, and while it may be easy to achieve par on a hole, many golfers aim to get a birdie. If you’re looking to improve your golf game and birdie every hole, here are some tips that can help you:

Get to Know the Course

Before you even hit the first tee, taking the time to get to know the course is essential. Familiarizing yourself with the course layout and terrain can give you a valuable edge over the competition. 

Spend some time studying the area and working out the best places to aim for and those to avoid. Additionally, familiarize yourself with the bunkers, water hazards, and other hazards that could slow your progress. 

Also, take note of any doglegs, blind shots, and sloping greens. Taking the time to get to know the course can help you make the best decisions, maximizing your success.

Use the Proper Discs

It is vital to use the proper discs when playing disc golf. To maximize performance, it is essential to learn the discs’ flight characteristics and to understand which discs work best for different types of shots.

You can achieve this by using discs that are appropriate for the degree of expertise you presently possess. 

There are discs available for various skill levels, including beginners, amateurs, intermediate players, advanced players, and professional players. 

Choosing suitable discs for your skill level can make a big difference in your game and help you reach your goals.

With the correct discs and knowledge of flight characteristics, you can maximize your performance and take your game to the next level.

Recognize Flight Ratings

Generally, the four little numbers on the front of a disc represent the disc’s flight rating, which includes information about the disc’s speed, glide, high-speed turn, and low-speed fade. 

By comparing the flight ratings of different discs, you can better understand how they will perform in action. 

Speed ratings range from 1 to 14, with one being the slowest and 14 being the fastest. Glide ratings range from 1 to 7, with 1 representing the least amount of glide and 7 representing the most significant amount. 

The high-speed turn and low-speed fade ratings range from -5 to +5, with -5 representing the understable disc and +5 representing the most overstable disc.


Practice is essential for mastering any sport, including golf. 

Taking the time to consistently practice the basics and refine your swing, rather than simply going out on the course and playing, will help you to improve your game and increase your confidence. 

It is essential to focus on basics such as your grip and your stance and posture setup. It helps you develop a consistent swing, which is vital to success in golf. 

Additionally, practicing from different distances, directions, and terrain can help you prepare for any course. 

Regular practice sessions will improve your game and increase your confidence and potentially birdie every hole.

Invest In Quality Equipment

Investing in quality equipment is essential for golfers looking to improve their game. It is crucial to choose the right clubs, balls, and other golfing accessories that will best suit your swing and individual needs. 

You can improve your technique, increase your accuracy, and play with greater confidence with quality equipment. 

The right equipment can also help you reduce your risk of injury and increase the longevity of your golfing career. 

Make sure to research your options and invest in quality equipment suitable for your level of play and individual goals.


A birdie is a score that is one stroke under par when playing disc golf. Learning what a birdie in disc golf is can be a great way to help improve your game. 

Knowing how to calculate a birdie and the different types of birdies you can achieve can help you understand how to maximize your score. With practice, you can become a master at disc golf and use birdies to your advantage.

We hope that this post will be helpful to you who have a passion for disc golf. Thank you for taking the time to read this post!