Kazi & Mental Toughness: Ultimate Frisbee

In the penultimate edition of our 6-part series on mental toughness, we examine ultimate frisbee. We have previously written on mental toughness in runningsoccer, and tennis, and bowling.

By way of introduction, here is how we define it:

What is Mental Toughness?


Mental Toughness not hard to identify but difficult to define. Inc magazine provides an interesting starting point in “4 Excuses Mentally Strong People Don’t Use“. These are:

  • I’d rather beg for forgiveness than ask for permission.
  • You only live once.
  • I don’t care what anybody thinks.
  • I deserve to be happy.

While these sayings aren’t necessarily bad, when used as excuses they tend to have deleterious effects. When mental toughness is defined as one’s ability to consistently demonstrate outstanding results in the most critical circumstances, then an excuse designed to shirk one’s responsibilities is counter-productive. In addition to the cliches above, we would humbly propose the following addendum:

  • Whatever will be, will be.

Now, there is probably a time and place for this. However, the mentally strong don’t use this as a way to avoid follow-through but rather as a comfort that when he has “worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted one the field of battle – victorious.”Not necessarily a victor in the  battle itself but a victor in knowing he has done all that he could. (h/t Vince Lombardi)

Mental Toughness in Ultimate Frisbee

Imagine yourself on a grassy field.
Friends shout all about
The pressure upon you now mounts
So many arms and legs – too many to count,
Nought but a frisbee do you wield.

A disc, not large; in fact really quite small,
Its centripetal rotation forestalling its fall,
The air underneath outweighs that from above,
Soaring softly through wind like the wings of a dove.

“Forehand or backhand”, you think with an arm in your face.
“It would surely be nice if this guy gave me some space.”
“If I go left, he won’t be quite as ready.”
“But right, I don’t know, I’m just not nearly as steady.”

So you ponder, but quickly, for your friends are still shouting.
And way down the field your teammates are doubting…
Doubting if they should have settled for you,
To get play in motion and carry them through.

You consider a Hail Mary, and then the other Hail Mary.
But that wouldn’t do…
A cop-out’s not for you
So you try something new
Something magically, wonderfully, amazingly new

You cross your left food around
Keeping your right on the ground
Fake a dump pass to the right,
Spin with all of your might,
Flick your wrist coming round
To the direction of your teammate’s sound…

Down…to no one…

But a desperate friend, sprinting,
And diving
And catching.
You’ve scored!


…..And that’s how you deal with mental toughness in Ultimate Frisbee. Hope you enjoyed it. See you on the field!


(Image Credit: TotalProSports)

One thought on “Kazi & Mental Toughness: Ultimate Frisbee

  1. Pingback: Kazi & Mental Toughness: Basketball – The Kazi App

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