HISTORY LESSON OF THE WEEK:
Most of the history lessons until now have revolved around men taking the sport of Ultimate and running with it, but the women have more than carved out their place as well. In the early days (even before Title IX revolutionized women’s sports in 1972), the ladies played with the guys, because there were no other opportunities. Among the list of founders of some of the early teams were Andrea Cummis and Sandy Stillman, who founded college teams at Carnegie Mellon and SUNY Binghamton, respectively in 1975. Both were graduates of Columbia High in Maplewood, NJ where the sport originated. For several years, most Ultimate teams and competitions were co-ed, even if women were not present at all on many rosters. However women soon became prevalent enough to form their own teams and organizations. Again, Santa Barbara led the way when the Lady Condors were formed in 1978. The following winter, the Flyingdisc League of Women (FLOW) was created with the purpose of spreading the word even further. Other all-women teams began to sprout across the nation. Cornell’s women’s team (later called the Wild Roses) was founded in 1979. Tiina Booth joined the team in 1980. Booth is still one of the most influential women in Ultimate today, co-authoring the recent “Essential Ultimate” coaching book and being the annual leader of the National Ultimate Training Camp. The first Women’s National Championship (at the club level) is recorded as Boston Ladies Ultimate defeating Synergy (out of the Northwest) in 1981. Some of the earliest women’s clubs to dominate the scene were the Fisheads (East Lansing, MI) and the Lady Condors. The most dominant team to date has been Lady Godiva out of Boston, winning 9 Championships between 1988 and 2002. The reigning Women’s Club Champion is San Francisco’s Fury, winning their fourth straight Championship in 2009. At the college level, the women were given their own division in 1984, with a Stanford victory. Stanford remains one of the elite women’s programs. Similar to the club level, UC Santa Barbara (the Burning Skirts) collected several championships through the late 80s and 90s and picked up another in 2009. The rise of women led to a separate Women’s division and paved the way for the current separate styles of play we see today, with a Mixed Division (co-ed), Women’s Division, and Open Division. The Open Division (instead of an all-men’s division), still allows women to participate.
LINK OF THE WEEK:
“Ultitraining” is a relatively new website which includes good information on how to train for our sport, often from a perspective of real exercise science. Look for regular updates and tips on this site.
With Ultimate still being a young and relatively obscure sport, we have yet to really see anything specialized for us in terms of athletic training, but with sites like this and the Ultimate Fitness video that came out a couple years ago (http://www.upa.org/shop/addl/fitnessdvd), the sport is slowly advancing. These are things we all definitely need because of the physical demands of Ultimate!
RULE OF THE WEEK:
"Best Perspective": Since Ultimate is self-officiated, it is important to know who is correctly supposed to make the calls in certain situations. In previous rules of the week, you may recall that fouls (non-incidental contact) can only be called by the person being fouled. Picks can only be called by the obstructed player. Travels and other violations can be called by anyone on the infracted team who recognizes the infraction. Up/Down calls and Out of Bounds calls are determined by “Best Perspective,” which is a term used several times in the rules and are listed below. Please note that it is a common misperception that if you have the disc and there is a dispute, it is “your call.” That is not true. If someone else had a better view of where your feet were when you caught the disc or if it touched the ground before you caught it, “best perspective” is the rule:
II.A. (Definition) - Best perspective: The most complete view available by a player that includes the relative positions of the disc, ground, players, and line markers involved in a play. On an unlined field, this may require sighting from one field marker to another.
XI.C. (Scoring) - If a player scores according to XI.A (catching a legal pass in the end zone and retaining possession through ground contact), but then unknowingly throws another pass, a goal is awarded to that player, regardless of the outcome of the pass. However, if it is unclear if the player [is actually in the end zone] (i.e., there is no agreement on the player who had best perspective, and there are opposing view points on the play), the result of the pass stands.
XV.C. (Receiving) - If it is unclear whether a catch was made before the disc contacted the ground (grass is considered part of the ground), or whether a player’s first point of ground contact after catching the disc was in- or out-of-bounds or in or out of the end zone, the player with the best perspective makes the call. XVI.D. - If a dispute arises concerning an infraction or the outcome of a play (e.g., a catch where no one had a good perspective), and the teams cannot come to a satisfactory resolution, play stops, and the disc is returned to the thrower and put into play with a check, with the count reached plus one or at six if over five.