Tag Archives: Mike R

‘Pro’ side Woes

Michael Ramanauskas puttingYou confidently walk up to your marker, putter in hand. Your feet find that sweet spot between the branch and rock. As you adjust your stance, your back heel comes up, your toes twist, your center of gravity shifts… and you wait… until… it’s time!

“Ching!!!… thunk”

After watching your putter sail through the air, gracefully curving in towards the chains, jaws hits the ground in utter disbelief as your trusty putter splashes out and falls flat to the ground. All that practice, all that focus, the way you nailed that sweet spot. How did it not go in? You hit ‘Pro’ side!

Definition: The ‘Pro’ side is generally considered as the middle third area of the chains off-centre of the post on the same side as your throwing hand. Hitting this spot will generally force your disc into the basket and greatly reduce chance for splash out or deflection away from the target.

There is a common understanding that there is an ‘Am’ side of the chains (where your putt is more likely to splash out) and a ‘Pro’ side of the chains (where your putt is more likely to go in) and basic physics supports this.  However, there is also a common misconception that if your putt touches the ‘Pro’ side that you cannot miss making the putt. This kind of thought can really hurt your game.

The physics that would define why that sweet spot exists is the same physics that makes that location NOT a guarantee.

For a putt to hit chains and go in the basket, you require a throw that has the right combination of speed, angle of entry, spin, level of surface friction (and many more variables) to be successful. If any singular aspect or variable is off, your chance for a missed putt is increased. Your putter could hit the chain slightly offside, or maybe the metal is too cold and slippery, or their is a small gust of wind. Okay, we all know this at some level, but why is assuming the sweet spot is a guarantee a bad thing?

When you make a putt, it not only finishes a hole successfully, but it effectively raises your confidence. We have the axiom of “playing well = confidence  / confidence = playing well” to thank for that. When you hit that sweet spot, (regardless of distance) and it doesn’t go in… well, that’s a whole different level of psychological messiness.

It’ll go something like this:

  1. Blame will be assigned
    1. the chains for being too heavy/light
    2. the particular model of basket
    3. the weather for changing humidty/causing frost/accumulating dust/gusting wind/sudden sunshine
    4. your fellow player who shifted ever so slightly during your delivery
    5. the putter,  as it had a singular drop of moisture/gouge on the rim and you oriented the stamp the wrong way
    6. Obama.
  2. Disbelief will linger
  3. Faith in your technique and the sweet spot will be lessened
  4. Your chance of missing your next putt will probably increase as you’ll become uncertain/over-cautious

Regardless of how you mentally process it, if you accept that the ‘Pro’ side isn’t a guarantee, you won’t try to blame everything and everyone as to why that putter and basket conspired to hate you. The ‘Pro’ side will increase your odds of a successful putt. When you practice, aim for those sweet links as best you can. But always keep in mind that nothing in disc golf is guaranteed. There are too many variables in every throw.

If you can accept that truth, if you peacefully accept that the ‘impossible’ can and will happen, you’ll be able to successfully move on to the next throw… and inwardly smile when you hear someone else exclaim “But I hit the ‘Pro’ side!”.

 

Michael Ramanauskas throwing at Provincials 2014Michael Ramanauskas is a member of Team Disc Cellar and the owner of DoubleRam Disc and  Washline.com, and is responsible for multiple custom stamps including: the 2015 30th Anniversary Provincial Disc Golf Championships, 2014 DCO (Disc Cellar Open) and the “Smokom” Sarah Hokom signature stamp.

Welcome Michael Ramanauskas!

This announcement is sort of like a belated birthday greeting, it’s anticlimactic because it’s already happened. Which is not to diminish its importance. Michael has been a frequent collaborator on stamps and is responsible for the Disc Cellar logo itself. At some point  this evolved to include a sponsor/sponsee relationship.

So here’s acknowledging that Mike is part of Team Disc Cellar, he even has a snazzy player bio with pictures and everything.

In addition to being a father, husband and Disc Golfer, Mike is an artist, with an increasingly large number of custom stamps to his credit including the Smokom design that he did for 2012 PDGA World Champion Sarah Hokom. You may have read the interview he did of Sarah, if not you should. More of his Disc Golf centric design work can be found through DoubleRam Disc or more general through Washline.com,

Mike has ambitious (but achievable) goals for his Disc Golf career, and we’re pleased to be able to support him in their pursuit. Please join us in officially welcoming Mike to the team!

p.s. If you want to be on the team, it’s possible. General player sponsorship information, and the current team.

Michael Ramanauskas headshot at Passive Park

Daedalus Proto: First Impressions – Mike

Mike R, is the owner and creative genius behind Washline.  He’s responsible for all the Disc Cellar Open (DCO) custom stamps, including the mini and he’s recently done the logo design for the 2014 BC Open.  He has recently moved from Am Intermediate to Am Advanced and normally plays out of Passive Park in Langley, BC.  He is one of three winners in our Innova Daedalus Prototype giveaway and here is his first impressions review:

I grabbed a 171g Daedalus from The Disc Cellar while at Robert Burnaby Park. The first impression was ‘This looks and feels really nice!’. The plastic felt flexy without being rubbery and the rim was nice and wide. I threw it on a few of the longer drives and was pretty happy with the distance and control I was able to get right out of the box.

Later that same day I took it to Langley (my home course) for some home ground testing.

Starting on Summer pad #1, a hole I usually throw a 171g R plastic Bolt* on, the Daedalus seemed perfect for the long drive. As a comparison I threw it flat and low… the same way I huck the Bolt on that hole. Straight down the fairway and just past the chains!

You can’t judge a disc on one throw, so I continued to throw it for every drive where I would normally use my Bolt.

After a full round, I found my drives were about 20-40 feet longer, had more control and, it may seem like a small thing, but the plastic wipes dry really easy and has great tackiness in your hand.

I have played about 10 rounds with it now and am really happy with this disc. It anhyzers when you want it to, can maintain a long straight flight on a hyzer edge and has generally increased my distance in comparison to the Bolt. The downside seems to be how the plastic changes with the weather. If your round starts off cold and finishes in the sun, the flight path will change (becoming more understable as it gets gummier) but I find that a small trade off for this durable plastic.

Power/mega distance throwers will find it fairly flippy if thrown flat, and that alone could make it a great roller, while newer players will probably be challenged if their release angles are inconsistent.

Overall, I would say that players that love the Bolt will now have an Innova option that seems to have improved on that mould.

Time to go throw it some more.

* R plastic Bolt would be a Recycled Gold Line Bolt by Latitude 64 (also carried by The Disc Cellar) and which is rated by Lat 64 as: Speed 13, Glide 6, Turn -2, Fade 3 while the Daedalus Proto is 13, 6, -4, 2 according to Innova.

The Disc Cellar currently still has about 30 of the Proto Daedalus in stuck, but once they are gone, they are gone forever.