To achieve maximum flight distance, the optimal driver choices for many senior disc golf players can be different from those of a twenty-something athlete.  In this guide, we will demonstrate three different options for players who throw discs at a moderate release velocity and want to increase their drive distance.

Note: This is not a guide for “Beginners”, this is a guide for “MVA’s”:  Moderate Velocity Athletes.

“Beginners” are players with limited distance due to poor technique.  For this guide, however, MVA’s are assumed to be players with reasonably good technique, but with short drive distances due to limited flexibility and/or physical strength.

 

Option #1: Light Weight Drivers (under 165g)

"My adult sons could always out-drive me by 75 feet, but I can throw this Blizzard Wraith a mile!" Robert, Age 67
“My adult sons could always out-drive me by 75 feet, but I’m throwing this Blizzard Wraith a country mile! Thank you!” Robert, Age 67

Studies have proven the number one factor impacting flight distance is release velocity, with each incremental mile per hour of release velocity generating (on average) an additional 7.2 feet of flight distance.

Reducing disc weight enables MVA’s (and all other players) to immediately increase their release velocity.  For example, the force required to accelerate a 175g disc to 50MPH is the same force needed to accelerate a 155g disc to 56.5MPH. In short, the same amount of effort can yield an additional 6.5MPH in velocity and 47 feet in extra distance.

The Downside: Light-weight drivers are more susceptible to the impacts of wind (click here for more detail), and should be used on relatively calm days or when in the shelter of trees.


Option #2: Understable Drivers

Understable Disc Flight PathTo achieve optimal distance, players must throw discs with sufficient velocity to cause them to “turn over” during the high-speed portion of flight.  Disc Stability is often described as the “tendency” of discs to turn-over in flight, but Stability is more accurately described as the “velocity required” to make the disc turn over.  Because Understable discs turn-over at lower speeds (than Overstable discs) they are an excellent option for MVA’s.

The Downside: Understable discs provide more variable flight patterns that overstable discs (click here for more detail), and should be used only by MVA’s with consistent throwing techniques.


Option #3: High Glide Drivers

Glide is an often misunderstood concept in Disc Golf.

In basic terms, Glide is a measurement of lift generated by the disc, with high-Glide discs having a tendency to stay in flight longer while also softening the low-speed fade. On low-wind days, almost all players can benefit from high Glide, but MVA’s most of all.

 

MVA Glide Scale Recommendation

 

The Downside: High Glide discs tend to gain height and lose speed very quickly when thrown into a headwind, so always be aware of wind conditions.

 

Putting It All Together

These options can have a synergistic effect when combined into one disc, but we strongly recommend choosing discs that only combine two of the above.   Combining all three will create a disc with too many limitations to be functional for broad use.

Here are two of our top recommendations:

#1 Innova Star Mamba

Plastic: Star
Weight: 165-175g
MVA Benefits: Combines High Glide with Understable Flight

The Mamba is one of the most Understable high-Glide drivers available, providing MVA’s with a max-distance flight pattern at relatively low release velocities.

As stated above, stick with a heavier plastic like Star to help give the Mamba the versatility needed to be your primary driver.

Get a Mamba with These Exact Specifications Here

#2 Innova Blizzard Wraith

Plastic: Blizzard
Weight: 130-149g
MVA Benefits: Combines Light Weight with High Glide

The Blizzard Wraith holds the current world record for fastest thrown disc (95mph!) due to its low gram weight: perfect for MVA’s in the 130-149g classes.

While much more Stable than the Mamba and with slightly less glide (5), the Blizzard Wraith’s light weight can significantly increase release velocity to help create high-speed turnover and generate the lift needed to stay in flight longer.

Get a Wraith with These Exact Specifications Here

 

Senior Value Pack

Because many of our readers would like to add both of these discs to their bags, for your convenience we’ve created a 2-disc value pack in our store.  Having both in your bag allows you to use the best disc for the specific course and wind conditions you are playing.

To further improve your performance with these discs, the Value Pack also includes our exclusive Field Wind and Weather Guide and Senior Driver Flight Optimization Guide!

Add Both Discs to Your Bag Now!

Share Your Experiences

We hope this guide helps you find the perfect disc option to achieve maximum distance, and if you are a Senior Player PLEASE share your experiences with the concepts above using our Comments section below!

If you have any questions about this guide, please let us know using our Contact page!

 

15 thoughts on “The Top 3 Disc Golf Driver Options for Older Players and Seniors

  1. Barry Fischer says:

    Love your information – I’ve been saying some of these things just not with all the great info! Question: What about discs in the MVP/Axiom lineup? I’m using a 153 gm Virus to do a hyzer flip. Gets great distance when you get it right. Problem is learning to be consistent with the flip. Mamba has been one of my go to discs for quite awhile. I’m really liking the gyro plastic. The physics of it makes great sense and seems to work well also.

    Barry #706

    • Bart Bird says:

      Barry — looks like you are on the right path with the Virus: Axiom’s most understable driver in a light weight. As another option you might consider the MVP Impulse for a little more controllable hyzer flip. Good luck!

  2. joecoin says:

    Vibram Unlace works for me, I’m 58. I have been playing three years. Wish they could make them a little bit lighter.

    I also use a Blizzard Wraith. And 150 gram DX Tbirds.

  3. Barry Fischer says:

    I’ve been using a 154 Insanity. It is becoming my main disc. I’ve also picked up a 137 Photon along with a 137 gm Wraith. The Wraith is flippier than the Photon. Depending on the wind. With a wind coming towards the T don’t throw the Wraith or the Virus. Just keep on having fun and hukking those discs.

  4. D. Barnes says:

    My previous long throw was 246 feet. I got my new “senior” discs yesterday. I threw the Mamba 270 feet and the Wraith 329 feet! ( The Wraith throw was an off line pull about 30 yards left.)

    I think I may finally get my throws close to 300 feet up from about 220.

  5. Steve-o says:

    Great to now know and understand the physics of the game. Thanks so much for your time and efforts, providing such valuable info!
    @ 56, I’m throwing further then ever! 156g Mamba is my go-to understable RHBH driver. Just tried a 168G Bolt yesterday and was throwing it nearly as far as the Mamba, with a bit more stability. Waiting on a new 163g Star Destroyer for my forehand flick drives.
    Keep up the great work.
    Thanks again!

    • Bart Bird | Site Manager says:

      Steve-o — Glad to help, and thanks for the feedback! I know there’s nothing more satisfying for me that setting a new personal distance record when driving!

      Also, We’ve got lots more research coming soon, so stay tuned!

  6. Greg says:

    I started this sport 1 year ago. I have struggled with distance versus direction. I am also working on the right approach and release. I have started using used discs. I have the Wraith and Mamba in my bag. I am finding that discs like the Valkyrie go almost as for as the Wraith and Mamba, with more control. I am hitting 200-240 fairly consistently. Is it realistic to expect a 300 – 320 throw?

    It is difficult finding “older ” disc golfers to share knowledge and experiences with. I found it beneficial to video my approach, but struggle to analyse my throws.

    Any suggestions? Are there senior only tourneys?

  7. Tom Reece says:

    I am 50 and have been playing less than a year. The Heat by Discraft is the only disc I can get close to 300 ‘ drives with. Working on my form to try and break that Mark 😉

    • Bart Bird | Site Manager says:

      Hi Tom – Congrats on breaking the 300′ mark! The Discraft Heat is another example of discs in this category: it has very high Glide (+6, Discraft’s highest Glide rating), and is very Understable (-3, Discraft’s most undestable rating for their distance drivers).

      Also, if you are looking for some form tips, check out our guide for 5 Easy Ways to Increase Your Drive Distance.

  8. Larry Donahue says:

    I am 78+ years old and suffer from a multitude of ailments, a couple of which will not allow me to walk even one hole. Do you know of anyplace that will allow golf carts or electric bikes to cover the course, I can do this in practice but would like to play against others like myself.

  9. Steven Spence says:

    I am 66 years old and started playing around 1985 semi-regularly but stopped in 2004 when I got too busy. Now retired I dusted off the discs and started again early this year. I found I had lost a lot of arm speed so started watching a lot of videos to improve throwing techniques and about disc rating and selection. Bought a DX Valkyrie (154 g) and a DX Beast (160 g), both provided fairly consistent straight throws and about the same distance (max for me around 275 feet). After they got beat up I bought a Star Beast (167g) and for me it is over-stable as all get out fading out after about 150 feet even with a strong hyzer release (doubtlessly due to the premium plastic and the higher weight). I then bought a DX Leopard (147 g) and it is severely under-stable and inconsistent but it did allow me to throw max at 290 feet. Later I bought a Champion Viking (163 g) but haven’t thrown it as much as it tends to fade out early so possibly too heavy for me, maybe it will break-in better. Last week I bought another Star Beast (142 g) and though it is not quite as straight as my DX Beast it is more consistent than the 167 g Star Beast and I have found it to be a great putter outside of the circle hitting several throw-ins over 40’ and one at 58’, then yesterday I hit an ace on the last hole of a 9-basket short course local to me (211’ on this hole uphill) and with no wind. So finally I have found the advantage of the lower weight discs in higher speed. I have not tried to see what a max throw is with this latest Beast but it appears during my course play to be around 250’ but I think I can get more out of it once it breaks in fully. Based on this article I will search now for a low-weight high-glide stable disc, maybe an Innova Krait instead of the Wraith since it has a little lower fade than the Wraith. Just to note I am primarily a backhand thrower. The course I play at everyday has many straight shots at the baskets with some minor obstacles so if I could find a consistent straight disc that I could throw 270’ I should be able to birdie almost every hole (now averaging an under 5 for the 9 holes).

    • Steven Spence says:

      …correction…on the 167g Star Beast my release should have been described as a “strong and release”, not hyzer.

  10. Michael Owens says:

    Aloha folks! I’m 59 and have been playing this sport since about 1973. Back then, the only discs we all had were the Master (about 185g) for Ultimate, freestyle, MTA and as a driver for golf. A 141g “mid-range” if you will, also a favorite of free-stylers and a great golf disc. Lastly, we had a 119g for putting and general seed separation uses.. (wink wink, nudge, nudge).
    I think that this sport would be great if every player had to use the same few discs, but what are you gonna do? Progress. I competed in the 1979 Flatland Frisbee Association Games and still have the glow “Anti-Nuke” fastback disc and a tournament entry disc from it.
    Yes, there were no baskets when we played Frisbee Golf back in the day, just mandos and targets we’d designate on the fly, but it’s just as much fun, if not more, now that the popularity is skyrocketing! My sons and I play every chance we get and I own WAAAY too many discs. This sport is addictive for sure! After all these years I think I’m getting the proper grip/release down as I recently threw an MVP Wave 342 ft. I’ve won my share of “Ring of Fire” putting contests, but have not placed in any tournaments.. YET! Love the sport and most of the people who play! – Mike O.

  11. Matt B says:

    I’m 65 and just started at the beginning of 2020. Also stuck at the 250 drive length. I thought something in the low 160 gram weight range was light. I’ll have to try going lower.

    Since the last comment it’s been nearly a year. Will you refresh this list?

    Meanwhile I’m using my age as an excuse. I have MVA I’ll tell them, maybe get some sympathy.

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