Whether you are playing in your very first disc golf tournament or your hundredth, there is always some excitement the night before an event. Nervousness, anxiety, confidence, game planning—these are all thoughts that may be running through your head. It’s important to channel that energy, as well as mentally and physically prepare for the day ahead. Here are a few helpful tips we recommend:
Being properly hydrated requires more than just drinking a lot of water the day of the event. In fact, it’s a good idea to start hydrating at least a few days before a tournament round. This is especially true if you are playing in a hot and/or humid environment. Drinking extra water throughout the week will get your body more prepared.
Take some time to stretch the night before you are about to play a long day of competitive disc golf. It can be a good way to relax the body and mind, while getting your muscles and joints ready for the next day. Of course, you will want to stretch and warm up the morning of the tournament, as well.
Go Through Your Game Plan
In one of our recent articles, we talked about creating a game plan for each hole on the course—or at least a general game plan for your round. (Click here to read the full article.) The night before is a good time to mentally walk through your plan and visualize how you intend to play each hole. You might even make a hole-by-hole list of which disc you plan to throw. The less you can overthink your strategy during the round, the better off you will usually be. Indecision usually leads to unconfident throws, which often lead to trouble.
Get Your Bag Ready
Knowing your game plan will also help you get your disc golf bag ready for the event. Make sure you have all the discs you plan to throw and any others that may be needed for scramble shots or alternative plans (such as a more overstable disc if there’s a stronger headwind than you planned for). Pack up snacks and the necessary accessories. Clean your water canteen. Chill other drinks you plan to bring. Make sure you have all the equipment you’ll need for your round. Getting this all done the night before will help eliminate stress the day of the tournament.
If you have a basket at home, take some time to practice your putting. Even if you don't have a practice basket handy, go out in yard and pick some trees or other targets to toss your putters at. If you are working on any mechanics, get them dialed in the day before the event. Putting practice before the tournament round should be able warming up and tapping into the muscle memory you’ve already developed. If you are thinking too much about form and other things during the pre-round warmup or during the round, it may be disastrous.
Get Plenty of Rest
Last but certainly not least, you should do what you can to get a good night’s sleep. This can be easier said than done if you are filled with nerves and excitement, but rest will help your body and your mind be more alert the next day.
These are just a few helpful tips for getting your mind, body and equipment ready the night before a big disc golf tournament. We all experience some nervousness or excitement. It doesn’t matter if you are a top pro or a recreational player. There are still some great steps you can take to prepare yourself for better competitive disc golf play.