Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Ultimate game

This weekend the USA Ultimate Championships are being held at the National Sports Center in Blaine, MN. I spent all of Saturday with my camera on the sidelines taking photos of the Minnesota Nice Youth Girls team (pictured above). This is a select group of about two dozen young ladies primarily from high schools located in around the Twin Cities.

This past year our daughter Rachel began playing for Armstrong High School and since that time I've become a big fan of the sport. There are a number of endearing aspects to the game...

1. Self-officiated. Players on the field make decisions if any penalties occur and then follow the rules prescribed by the game for such penalties.
2. Club sport. This seems to provide a little less win at all costs attitude among the players. The girls often even make up cheers for the opposing team afterwards. I witnessed a spirited game of "Ninga" after one game.
3. Lifelong sport. It can be played by all ages and with such minimal equipment; a Frisbee and markers for boundaries, can be played in a field most anywhere, or even on a beach.
4. Aerobic. Lots of running is involved, especially by the "cutters" who are commonly on the receiving end of the passes made by the "handlers".
5. Inexpensive. The only real equipment necessary is a Frisbee. Cleats are helpful, but not essential.

In addition to club sports at the high school level and beyond there are also pick up games around town.

Though many are unaware of the popularity of Ultimate it is being played at many college and university campus across the country and is played internationally.

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