Disc Golf Lover to Flytco Brand Developer - Faces of Disc Golf
Meet the first face of disc golf in our series... our very own Flytco Founder, Bradford Watson!
We wanted to kick off this series by sharing a little bit more about his story and what moved him to create an outdoor lifestyle brand with the disc golfer in mind.
What got you into disc golf initially?
Way back in my college days (somewhere around 2001) a buddy of mine who went to MTSU took me to play at Barfield in Murfreesboro, TN and I got hooked. I played sporadically off and on through the years but never joined a community of players until we moved to Columbia, TN in 2017.
What is your favorite reason to play disc golf? How does it fill your cup?
I love to play disc golf every chance I get because it satisfies my competitive spirit and my desire to be out in nature at the same time. With a busy work and family life, I am able to have a fulfilling hobby that takes half the time it takes to play ball golf and costs practically nothing. I also love that I can take my kids and wife with me sometimes too!
Do you have any other sports or hobbies?
I was a former college baseball athlete and I still love playing baseball. I even help coach my son’s little league team. I think I like disc golf so much because it has similar mechanics as swinging a baseball bat. I’m a huge Kansas City Chiefs fan too! I love watching them play and can’t wait to take my son to his first NFL game this season. Outside of sports, I always love a good board game night with friends, especially strategy games like Dominion. Being outdoors is my favorite though. I really love hiking and exploring with my family. We have some great family-friendly hiking trails near our home that we get out and explore often. Mountain biking is a blast when I get a chance but haven’t had as much time for it as I’d like. Let’s be honest here, I have a lot of hobbies... I like to hobby around.
How does your love for nature play into your love of disc golf?
I love hiking, I love being with the trees and fresh air and that 110% plays into my joy of the game. The most fun courses to play take you in and out of the woods and have tons of different landscapes and natural features. Courses like that keeps the game challenging and fuels my craving to get outside more.
Do you have a favorite course or place you have played before?
I’m partial to my home course at Woodland in Columbia, TN, but I really love Sharp Springs in Smyrna, TN and Barfield in Murfreesboro. Now that my kids are getting older (ages 4 and 6) we plan to travel all over to experience different courses across the country! Any vacation with some good hiking, good food and maybe a round or two of disc golf is my kind of vacation!
Tell us a bit about you and your life. How does disc golf fit in?
I’m a family man and love spending time with my wife and two young kids. My wife and I were wedding photographers for 10 years but retired from that busy schedule to spend more time with our babies. Because my life is family focused, disc golf is fairly casual for me. It's a fun and competitive hobby but I don’t get out on the course as much as some of the younger guys do. I play at least once a week with my local league and compete officially as often as my schedule allows. I’m a structural engineer Monday through Friday and balance my work with my family and fun. Thankfully disc golf allows me to take my family out with me and play some holes casually while we all get to explore our local parks. My kids really love throwing discs around, even if they spend most of their time just chasing them. Disc golf is a great way for all of us to be outdoors together.
I also have a few portable baskets I keep on our property. With 4 acres I can play a few holes in my backyard and let the kids run around beside me. It’s a lot of fun!
How can we follow you on social media?
Facebook: Bradford Watson and Flytco
... and the AdventureBlog on Flytco.com
Any advice for someone who is getting into disc golf?
Just go play for fun!! To get better, ask someone that plays a lot to help you choose discs to start out with and help you with fundamentals. Throw moderate speed or low speed under-stable discs at first and work your way up to more speed and stability. Just have fun! That is what it’s all about really. Meeting great people and having fun outside!
I made a great guide for anyone who is just getting into the sport to help improve your game knowledge and technique. It’s kind of like having a disc golf buddy in your pocket even if you don’t know anyone else who plays… yet! ;)
You can download it for FREE here.
Do you play for sport, hobby, competitively? Etc?
All of the above! I play casually but I also am a registered PDGA athlete and play in official leagues and events locally and around Middle TN.
My PDGA number is 111750
So why did you start Flyt Disc Golf Supply Company?
I am always introducing my buddies to disc golf. Many of them are avid outdoorsmen or sports lovers but still have no clue what disc golf is. They usually refer to it as frisbee and think its something kids do at the playground. Once I take them out for a round though, they always get hooked. It is amazing to me how many people still don't know what disc golf is. I wanted to fill a gap in the disc golf world for men like them. Men, women and families like mine who just love to be outside playing sports and tromping through the wilderness in some capacity. Flytco was born from that desire to bridge the outdoor lifestyle with disc golf. It is a way to share the outdoor lifestyle of disc golf and how the sport can take you beyond the chains and into a word of adventure and appreciation for nature. If you are a hunter, a fisherman, a crossfitter, a surfer, a trail runner or just someone who loves to get outside and explore, disc golf is a great addition to that. It is competitive and challenging and a great way to take part in a community of people who crave adventure just like you do!
My hope is for Flytco to continue to educate the community about the sport of disc golf and create more conservation efforts in local parks and natural spaces for future generations to enjoy. It really is a sport anyone can play and I love that!
Thanks Bradford for sharing and if you all know anyone who you'd love to see featured as our next Face of Disc Golf, shoot us an email here.