Basking at the Beach: Playing at the World Championships of Beach Ultimate


You spend your holidays at the beach? Enjoy and bathe in the sun and then refresh yourself in the water? Well, that´s what most people do on the beach. Not me. Almost every time I travel to a beach I do this to do sports: I play Beach Ultimate. - Ultimate Frisbee played on the beach. Last year in August I played at the World Championships of Beach Ultimate in Lignano Sabbiadoro, Italy. Read on how hard it is to run in the sun when everyone else on the beach is looking for shadow.

Credits: bloomchen

Most of you might never have heard of Ultimate Frisbee. So I´ll explain shortly: Ultimate Frisbee is a team sports played with a flying disc and the goal of the game is to score points by passing the disc to one of your teammates in the end zone of the opposing team. The end zone is similar to the one of American football or rugby. The player holding the disc can´t run and only move with one foot (pivot) similar to basketball.

Credits: bloomchen

Now here we go with the story of playing Beach Ultimate in Italy in scorching heat.

Well, we all know it´s hot during summer in Italy. And as most of the players play Beach Ultimate tournaments quite often everyone of us was expecting it too be hot.

But last year end of August it was so damn hot that even the Italians suffered and told us that usually it isn´t that hot end of August and we´re not lucky having to play in such a heat.

Irish player warming up in the sun.

After only one day the host realized that it is not fun nor sports anymore to play at noon with about 40 degrees (and no shadow on the playing fields). I must explain that Ultimate is a very fast and tiresome sports – you have to run/sprint almost all the time while you´re on the field. So the host decided to give the teams a break of about 2h from noon to 2pm. But well, that didn´t help much.

German National Mixed team listening to the anthems before the quarter-final against Austria.

It was so hot that it was almost impossible to run. The sun was sucking all power from the players bodies. Basking at the beach became somewhat a different meaning. Everyone on the field was basking but actually wanted to leave the field as soon as he could.

German National Mixed Master player taking a break between the points in the semi-finals.

After running two or maybe three sprints all energy was gone and you needed a break. But if the point was still played you had no other possibility than to actually walk as fast as you could on the sand. So sometimes the games looked more like players walking slowly on the fields and throwing or better trying to throw a disc to players with the same jersey. What we normally practice – good/save throws in moments of high physical stress – didn´t work anymore. This lead to turnovers and the opposing team had the same problem which meant that points normally played in less than 2 minutes took now up to 8 or in the worst case probably 10 minutes. That was really hard. To give you an impression with numbers how hard it was: I drank about 8 to 10 liters of water during the day while we played but I didn´t have to go and pee once.

Drinking drinking drinking…

At times we didn´t play ourselves we watched other games and it was really hard to do so. Those not playing took pity with those on the field. Another problem caused by the sun was the hot sand. It was getting so hot that you could only play with sand-socks or sand-shoes. But these got wet quickly because the feet were sweating and with getting wet they got more heavy and then you had to run with heavy sand-shoes as it wasn´t hard enough to run anyway.

I admit that all this sounds like a stupid idea and that it wasn´t fun at all but that´s not true: we had a lot of fun!

Player from Austria with a bloody jersey can still smile even though she stopped the disc with her face unintentionally.
Canadian Player having fun in the sun being caught on film.

We players had a hard time on the fields but Ultimate Frisbee has something of high value which is called “The Spirit of the Game” (SOTG)! This means playing fair or fairness is higher rated than actually winning the game. Therefore Ultimate Frisbee is played without a referee. But not only fairness on the field belongs to the SOTG. SOTG means to have fun, be polite and spent time together and discuss before and after the game with the players of the opposing team.

Discussing the game with the team of the US.
Team Canada Masters celebrating the 5th place.

And as we were playing World Champiosnships it was quite a lot of fun to meet players from 31 countries playing in 6 different divisions and talk to them, have fun at parties on the beach in the evening or refreshing with them in the water after the last match of the day with a beer and talking about the game we just played.

Two players of the team from the virtual Ultimate Frisbee country Currier Island are drinking the gift they got from our team: a bottle of Jägermeister.

The beach players are a bit like a huge family. We meet each other at tournaments all over Europe. But this time there were even teams from Canada and India, the Philippines, USA, Japan, Australia, Venezuela, United Arab Emirates… Unfortunately the first team from Africa ever talking part at Worlds of Ultimate Frisbee – the team from Uganda – couldn´t come because they didn´t get their papers to enter the country.

Teampicture Spain and German Masters, Teampicture Czech and German Masters, Teampicture Canadian and German Masters, Venezuela MIxed team preparing for a match, something happened on the other field so the Spanish Masters had a look.

I was playing with the German National team in the Open Masters divison (players older than 33). We tried hard but failed to go to the semi-finals. In fact we didn´t deserve it as we didn´t play that well. Even though we had up to 3 matches a day and we were busy warming up, between the team-meetings and tactical instructions there was time left to take some pictures with my La Sardina.

Credits: bloomchen

Unfortunately I had a hard time because the transport button broke. No good advertising because everyone was interested in my camera but everyone had to wait for my camera to be ready to shoot when we took the team-pictures after each match. Sorry for including two digital shots here to show you how I tried to transport the roll and everyone was waiting for me.

Credits: bloomchen

So if you ever notice some guys playing Ultimate Frisbee on the beach remember this story because there might be one of the players from Italy among them. Or maybe we meet each other on the beach if you step over and ask if there is some german guy from Berlin among them. Well, this upcoming week-end I´ll play a beach tournament in Berlin. Next time will be in Germany too. Usedom. Across Europe probably end of October in Barcelona/Castelldefels.

Credits: bloomchen

Thanks for reading and here some more shots and impressions from this great event:

Credits: bloomchen

written by bloomchen on 2012-05-25 in #lifestyle #championships #sprint #beer #wasser #team #frisbee #ultimate-frisbee #run #world-championships #cut #world #spirit #nations #lander #party #2011 #disc #nationen #water #jersey #trinken #rennen #sand #teams #italy #ultimate #drinking #sports #fun #heat #beach

More Interesting Articles

  • An Afternoon in Tagaytay Highlands

    written by stitch on 2014-07-28 in #world #locations
    An Afternoon in Tagaytay Highlands

    I have good memories of Tagaytay Highlands. There had been times when some of my friends and I would spend the weekend there, playing all sorts of sports and having our bodies healed in the warm and lapping jacuzzi pool. But those were distant memories. I was able to go back to this place, but only for an afternoon, and tried to remember the good old days.

  • Skate Spots Around the World: A Skater and his Shadow

    written by sirio174 on 2014-06-07 in #world #locations
    Skate Spots Around the World: A Skater and his Shadow

    While walking in Como with my Praktica camera, I found a young skater at a square in my city. After having chosen an elevated position on an overpass, I mounted my 85mm lens and played about with his performance and his shadow. Check it out after the jump!

  • Fresh from My Darkroom: The First Game of the New Rugby Season

    written by sirio174 on 2014-10-15 in #lifestyle
    Fresh from My Darkroom: The First Game of the New Rugby Season

    Last Sunday, the local rugby team Rugby Como played the first match of the 2014-1025 season. Rugby is my favorite sport to photograph, and for some years I've been documenting almost every home match of this young team. This time I used a 1959 Zorki 5 camera with a vintage 1958 Industar-50 lens loaded with a timeless film, the Ilford HP5+ developed in a century-old developer, the mythical Rodinal. Take a look after the jump!

  • Shop News

    Immortalize your best shot on Aluminium!

    Immortalize your best shot on Aluminium!

    Carefully enlarged from your negatives onto premium photographic paper by lab professionals, each picture is a unique piece of craftsmanship.

  • LC-A Goes To: Cesena and Cesenatico

    written by sirio174 on 2014-06-18 in #world #locations
    LC-A Goes To: Cesena and Cesenatico

    If you want to spend a weekend near the sea but do not want to restrict yourself to the usual routine consisting of the hotel and the beach, I recommend taking a trip to Cesena and Cesenatico, two towns located on the Adriatic coast of central Italy. I did mine by combining sunbathing and cultural excursions.This was documented with my trusty Lomo LC-A. Have a look!

  • Going Wild with the Petzval lens

    written by hannah_brown on 2014-08-18 in #news
    Going Wild with the Petzval lens

    This year Lomography UK headed to the Oxfordshire countryside to run two workshops at the Wilderness festival. We set up camp and battled the unpredictable weather with a trusty Petzval lens in hand. We battled through the rain, sun, mud and smelly toilets to capture the event in full. Read on for more.

  • 5 of the Best Ways to Share Your Lomo'Instant Pics

    written by jacobs on 2014-11-25 in #news
    5 of the Best Ways to Share Your Lomo'Instant Pics

    We love sharing photos! So, with the recent release of the beloved Lomo'Instant camera, we thought it would be a great idea to look at some of the best ways to share your instants with the world. Rather than letting them collect dust on a shelf or stay hidden away in a drawer somewhere, why not let everyone else in on your superb instant creations? Check out these 5 awesome ways you can do just that!

  • Shop News

    Fuji Instax Wide 300

    Fuji Instax Wide 300

    Shoot wider and bigger with this new instax camera that has film format twice the size of the instax mini films!

  • Summer Hot Spots: Coronado Beach, San Diego, California

    written by gothcupcake on 2014-07-04 in #world #locations
    Summer Hot Spots: Coronado Beach, San Diego, California

    My boyfriend Scott and I took our cameras on a road trip to the beautiful Coronado Beach in San Diego, California at the very end of May to catch beach combers, surfers, and beautiful sunsets on glorious film.

  • Wide-Angle Photo Tips: Size matters!

    written by dopa on 2014-07-15 in #gear #tipster
    Wide-Angle Photo Tips: Size matters!

    In your daily photo practice, a slight difference in focal length can have a huge impact on your images. Does it adjust everything in the photo? Do I get that entire steeple on the image without having to go so far back and then shooting in the sun? How exactly does a fisheye lens work? Read on and find out the answer.

  • Fresh from the LomoLab: My Summer at a Campsite

    written by sirio174 on 2014-09-23 in #lifestyle
    Fresh from the LomoLab: My Summer at a Campsite

    I prefer being outdoors whenever I go on a vacation at the seaside. For this reason, I always choose to stay at a campsite instead of a hotel. This year, I stayed at a beautiful one in the south of Italy. Here is a series of photos which I received a few days ago from the excellent LomoLab service, taken with my Sprocket Rocket. Have a look after the jump!

  • Shop News

    Summer Inspired Camera at 20% off

    Summer Inspired Camera at 20% off

    The brazilian summer inspired camera is now at 20% off! You can now celebrate life in full color and treasure every culture in a snap! This summer is no exception; make sure you’re prepared to capture all the sporty action with the Fisheye No.2 Brazilian Summer Camera!

  • Transient Living: Armitage & McMillan in Denver, Colorado

    written by maliha on 2015-01-07 in #world #locations
    Transient Living: Armitage & McMillan in Denver, Colorado

    If you want to know the heart of a person, peek inside his/her wardrobe! And no, nobody famous said that; I only just made it up. But really, don't you think it's true? After all, the way we dress screams our personality; at least for most of us. And that is why, as soon as I land on a new city, one of the things I absolutely must do is find the local boutiques. Sure, I love the fancy chain boutiques as much as the next person, but there's just something else about a local clothing store. It's unique!

  • Lomography Fisheye No.2: Seven Years of Wonder

    written by adi_totp on 2014-09-15 in #reviews
    Lomography Fisheye No.2: Seven Years of Wonder

    Exactly seven years ago, I bought this camera from Indonesia's local Lomography community. I remember having some savings in my bank account and just spending it all on this camera. At that time, I browsed the microsite for the Lomography Fisheye No.2 and immediately fell in love with it! Coincidentally, my friend who introduced me to Lomography just bought this same camera for his birthday. My life has changed ever since I had the Fisheye, my first lomographic camera.

  • What Art Can Learn from the Banal

    written by Kwyn Kenaz Aquino on 2015-03-30 in #world #lifestyle
    What Art Can Learn from the Banal

    Stephen Shore introduced to the 70s art world an unadorned image of American life. He captured littered restaurant tables as other photographers would immaculate vistas. For the opening of “American Surfaces”, he even taped unframed snapshots on gallery walls. In these videos, Shore talks about objects that have “no pretention to art” and the things he learned from Andy Warhol.