SAN ANTONIO – Disc Golf is a sport that doesn’t take much to play and has become more common in the San Antonio area since the COVID-19 pandemic began, according to those who report on and play it professionally.
“I think that it’s just been an insane explosion of growth,” Jonathan Gomez, founder of Jomez Pro said.
Jomez Pro is a multi-media platform that covers all things disc golf, and some professional disc golfers have called it the “voice of disc golf.”
Gomez has been riding the disc golf wave since the early 2000s, but he says since the start of the pandemic, disc golf has taken off across the country.
“It just kind of worked out that people needed something to do outside,” Gomez said.
He said fans started following more players on the professional tour and more people have been discovering the number of courses already in place at local parks.
Just in the San Antonio area, from Floresville to San Marcos alone there are 49 disc golf courses, according to UDisc app. Gomez attributes that to how inexpensive courses are for municipalities to install in parks.
“It is significantly lower, if not like exponentially lower than what a baseball field or a tennis court would cost, because in almost every instance you’re using an existing park like a park is already there,” he said.
It’s also inexpensive for players. You can buy low cost discs at a sporting goods store, and playing at your local park requires no fees or reservations.
“We used to know all the locals and to see all these new faces and new people out playing. It’s amazing to see. It’s amazing to see how far the sport has came in just two years,” Mason Ford, professional disc golfer said.
Ford is a professional disc golfer based in San Antonio. His girlfriend Valerie Mandujano also plays on the pro circuit. When not traveling for tournaments across the country during the professional season they practice daily at one of the three courses in Live Oak or Universal City.
“Overall, everything’s just grown and blown up and just gone off,” Mandujano said. “You know, you even stop at some gas stations and you see some disc on the shelf that you’re able to buy. So I feel like just a sport alone has just exploded.”
And Ford’s advice for first time players?
“Don’t take it too serious,” Ford said. “Just have fun. Enjoy yourself. Bring a handful of people, friends, family who you can go and enjoy it with.”