One thing to know about Ultimate Frisbee is that the sport is split into several different levels of expertise. There are youth programs, summer leagues, college level, club teams, professional, then masters league. The professional league and club leagues are very similar if not the same. It is the most upper and skilled level of ultimate.
I say similar If not the same since there is a divide in the programs. There are several different club teams across the nation, some more recognizable than others. The reason why some are more recognizable since some club teams go to club nationals. Club nationals is one of the most prestigious and skillful events in the ultimate community. If you’re on a team that qualifies for club nationals, you’re more than likely one of the best players in the nation. To qualify, teams have to compete each other by regions, and the best of the best teams in your region get to travel and play at club nationals. This year ESPN3 even covered some of the games and streamed the event live.
Last summer I played on a club team called Free Ride. We were not the best of the best and did not qualify for club nationals, but this is just one example of a club team that is still quite skillful, but not at club nationals level yet; maybe one day. Club Ultimate Frisbee is different than college level since there is a more distinct age range and skill range. I remember first starting on the team and everyone had a few years on me, and were excellent at the sport. They truly challenged me to become better in a short period of time since they were not going to wait and explain everything step-by-step as we do in college Ultimate.
Especially playing on a mixed team, I needed to advance and get on their level quickly. The summer that I joined a club team allowed me to grow so much as a beginning player. Therefore, if you’re a rookie or young player reading this, join a club team! You will not regret it and will meet so many new people in your community. Club Ultimate is its own sub-genre of Ultimate Frisbee, and is something that all Ultimate players should try!