State of Disc Golf 2015: Most Popular Brands Worldwide

This year we had enough respondents to determine which brand is most popular throughout the world. We actually didn’t bother making a map for the most popular brand, because it would look like this:

It’s true, Innova is the most popular brand in every state and region of the world. We knew that Innova was dominant from the responses in the survey, but to find out they were the favorite brand in every region. We are amazed. Even across the country in “Scandinavia” Innova was still #1. Had we asked specific countries, perhaps Sweden would have been Latitude 64.

We know that from interacting with others, they may disagree. We have seen the comments that say “everybody throws such and such brand where I live.” Our response to that is, you may not know everybody in your state that plays disc golf. In some cases, the sample size should be larger to strongly say that we are strongly confident in these results (more specifically, the results below). For example, we awarded no 2nd place in Wyoming because there is not enough data to determine.

Where things start to get interesting is when we look at where the second most popular brands are found in this image:
2nd-Most-Popular-Brand

Here’s what stood out to us from the image above:

  1. This is a colorful map. Many different brands (outside of Innova) are strongly favored in different parts of the world.
  2. The closer a brand is to its headquarters, it tends to be more highly favored in that area.

Legacy is headquartered in California. What is California and Nevada’s second favorite brand Legacy? DD is in Kansas, and is dominant in the midwest. The exceptions start to come with MVP, where disc golf manufacturuing is

Before you comment:

To understand how Infinite Discs has come to conclusions in this article, please read our State of Disc Golf 2015: Introduction post. After you understand the statistics and methodology of the survey, feel free to post.

State of Disc Golf 2015: Popularity Around the World

We had some fun digging much deeper into the data to do some per capita comparisons and are super intrigued by what we have found. According to the data, Maine has more disc golfers per person than anywhere else in the world! Below is information about how popular disc golf is in each state, and region of the world.

For the images below, we did not make a world map, just a United States map. The shades of the lettering on the actual name of the territory (such as Canada) indicates how popular disc golf is in said area. For exact details, scroll to the bottom of this post; we published the number of responses from every region. Africa, South America, and Antarctica were not options in the poll; they will be included next year.

Where today's disc golfers are (number of respondents/ divided by population). The more popular areas are shaded darker.

Where today’s disc golfers are (number of respondents/ divided by population). The more popular areas are shaded darker.


Disc golf popularity according to Google Trends. This graph adds validity the previous graph, by comparing search data to where respondents are located. The graphs look incredibly similar.

Disc golf popularity according to Google Trends.
This graph adds validity the previous graph, by comparing search data to where respondents are located. The graphs look incredibly similar.


Region # Respondents Population in Millions
Respondents per Million
Alabama 62 4.78 1.30
Alaska 21 0.71 2.96
Arizona 57 6.39 0.89
Arkansas 33 2.92 1.13
Asia 4 4,427.00 0.00
Australia 30 23.3 0.13
California 353 37.25 0.95
Canada 151 35.16 0.43
Colorado 132 5.03 2.62
Connecticut 37 3.57 1.04
Delaware 15 0.9 1.67
District of Columbia 1 0.6 0.17
Europe 67 722.38 0.01
Europe – Scandinavia 133 20.12 0.66
Florida 134 18.8 0.71
Georgia 133 9.69 1.37
Hawaii 7 1.36 0.51
Idaho 52 1.57 3.32
Illinois 174 12.83 1.36
Indiana 107 6.48 1.65
Iowa 82 3.05 2.69
Kansas 101 2.85 3.54
Kentucky 67 4.34 1.54
Louisiana 29 4.53 0.64
Maine 50 1.33 3.76
Maryland 40 5.77 0.69
Massachusetts 124 6.55 1.89
Michigan 273 9.88 2.76
Minnesota 148 5.3 2.79
Mississippi 26 2.97 0.88
Missouri 146 5.99 2.44
Montana 11 0.99 1.11
Nebraska 20 1.83 1.10
Nevada 17 2.7 0.63
New Hampshire 36 1.32 2.73
New Jersey 32 8.79 0.36
New Mexico 18 2.06 0.87
New York 101 19.38 0.52
North Carolina 232 9.54 2.43
North Dakota 9 0.67 1.34
Ohio 157 11.54 1.36

Before you comment:

To understand how Infinite Discs has come to conclusions in this article, please read our State of Disc Golf 2015: Introduction post. After you understand the statistics and methodology of the survey, feel free to post.

Disc of The Day Contest

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Throughout January we will be featuring some of the most popular and best selling disc golf product every day.

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20% Off on Featured Discs

The day that each disc is featured there will be a 20% discount code available for anyone who wants to buy the featured disc. That discount code will be published on our announcement for the disc on social media.

$260 in Bonus Prizes!

In addition to the huge discount (off of our already lowest prices), there will be a $10 Infinite Discs gift card awarded daily!

How to win?

Disc reviewers are eligible to win these discs. To find out what the featured discs are each day, make sure you follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google +, or all three.

When will the featured product be announced?

You’ll find the featured product on our Facebook page at 6am, Eastern every day.

Tip: Review, review, review!

You won’t know which disc will be featured, and they will be featured only until midnight of the day they are announced. Increase your odds of winning gift cards by writing reviews on all the discs you have thrown.

– Good luck from the Infinite Discs Crew

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Let us know: Which disc are you hoping will be featured?

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Winter 2014 Recap & Gift Card Guide

The Holiday Season has moved so quickly we can’t believe it’s coming to a close. We sincerely hopeful you have a wonderful Christmas, and that 2015 will be an amazing year for you. Within this post, we’ve included a few sneak peaks into 2015 releases.

In this season whirled by you for as well, we have put together this quick guide to bring you up to speed. Within this guide, 90% of products mentioned were announced or released after November 1st! That’s right Business Week, disc golf is not “expired” it’s booming.

Gift Card Guide

This guide is also intended to be a useful reference for those who will be spending their gift cards on or after Christmas. If you haven’t purchased a Christmas gift yet, you are out of time for a delivery. Go here to purchase a disc golf gift card. which is delivered instantly via e-mail!

Let’s check out the latest from the top disc golf brands:

MVP & Axiom

SkullBoy Theory – The most stylish brand meets the most recognized artistry in disc golf. Two stage hot stamping at its finest.
Dri-Fit Teeshirts – Many color options, many sizes.
MVP Polo – Performance polo. Dress professionally while playing professionally (If you have a PDGA# that applies to you).
Hoodies – Super thick 50 cotton, 50 poly. Perfect for keeping you toasty on those chilly days.
Throwback Axis – Artwork from the early days of MVP, on their premium Neutron plastic.
Hats – High quality hats, flex fit, black, red or blue. Besides another color option of orange, is there anything more you could ask for?
Proxy – The Proxy is similar to the Envy, which may be the disc of the year according to the 2015 State of Disc Golf Survey. So far, the Proxy is also off to an excellent start.
Electron Atom – Coming 2015 – MVP’s new baseline plastic, with excellent feel, and an attractive price. We’re guessing you’ll see these in early 2015.
Fireball – Coming 2015
Wrath – Coming 2015
Insanity – Coming 2015
Virus – Coming 2015


Innova

Champion Thunderbird – According to All Things Disc Golf, this is the 2014 disc of the year! Just recently released in Jolly Launcher Champion plastic, but is also available in the popular GStar blend.
Innova 30th Anniversary Big Bead (Glow) Aviar – The Big Bead Aviar is also known as the Aviar Driver.
Innova 30th Anniversy XT Aviar – Has it really been 30 years? As for the XT blend, that came out in 2014.
Christmas Atlas – Ho ho ho!
Christmas Destroyer – Yes, it’s 12 speed. But did you realize this edition is a 25 glide, 20 high speed turn, and 14 low speed fade?
Christmas Roc – Ready for a Pun? Christmas Rocks!
2015 Calendar – These get better every year.


Discraft

Elite Z Heat – The Discraft Ace Race disc is great for newer players, and one of our most popular sellers of the year.
Z Lite Avenger SS – This ultra popular driver for beginners as now even easier to throw.
Z Lite Crank – Last years most popular selling Discraft disc is now lighter. Bomb this baby!
Z Lite Mantis – The popular Mantis, only lighter.
Z Lite Nuke – A Nuke that even average arm players can throw.
Z Lite Nuke SS – It’s a lighter Nuke SS.
Z Lite Surge SS – Feel those air bubbles provide easy distance.
LE CryZtal Buzzz OS – These are limited, but we still have a few left in Stock.
TEASER: Semi-Exclusive Infinite Discs Release (Coming 2015) – Have you ever wanted to throw a Titanium Flick? We’ll have that and more early January!


Trilogy

Fluid Judge – Putt with this popular putter please.
Fluid Escape – Dynamic Discs most popular driver.
Fluid Truth – You’ve handled the Truth, but can you handle this Truth?
Fuzion Enforcer – What’s special about the Fuzion Enforcer you ask? The limited edition run of Eric McCabe is what makes this one special.
Elasto World – Not for the beginner.
Elast Giant – Also not for the beginner. Who else wants to call this the Frost Giant? We do.
DecoDye XXX – For those who love plastic with style.
Gold Claymore – Super popular midrange. Released just this year, and already available in Recycled, Opto, Gold Line and also…
Frost Claymore – See what we’re talking about?
Frost Diamond – There is no reason not to get beginners into disc golf this winter.
Frost River – One of Latitude 64’s best sellers.
Ranger Bag Restock – It’s difficult to say, but judging by this bag nearly always being out of stock, it may be the most popular disc golf bag of 2014. A few of the most popular 2014 colors are now back! Get them while they’re available.
Latitude 64 Luxury Bag – Revisions were recently made to make this bag even better, and more luxurious than the first version.


DiscMania

CD2 (C-Line G-Line) – Coming 2015
PX1 (Beaded Putter) – Coming 2015


Prodigy

Glow H1 – It glows in the dark.
Glow PA-3 – Tacky, durable, glows in the dark. Is this the best plastic ever?


Accessories

Retrievers – Get your disc out of any situation!
2015 Disc Golf Calendar – Because the first thing you need to say every day, is a disc golf target.
Disc Lights – There’s no need to stop when the sun goes down!
Disc Towels – Because you never realize you need it, until you need it. The question is, were a Boy Scout, and did you learn to be prepared?


Baskets

DGA Mach Lite – Our top selling portable basket will be arriving in black in early 2015.

State of Disc Golf 2015: Manufacturer Overview

Before you read:

To understand how Infinite Discs has come to conclusions in this article, please read our State of Disc Golf 2015: Introduction post.

Which brand is the favorite in 2014?

Innova ran away with the title of most popular brand again in 2014. While that fact may not be surprising, what stands out is the amount of increase in popularity from 2013 to 2014. This year, nearly half of all respondents chose Innova as their favorite brand of disc (48%). According to last year’s survey, 38% of disc golfers chose Innova as the favorite brand. That is a sizable increase in one year.

[one_half]Coming in second place  is Discraft at 12%. That percentage is down slightly from 2013. Third place belonged to Latitude 64 with 10% of respondents listing them as the favorite. Dynamic Discs came in next at 6%, followed by MVP and Prodigy, with 5% each. The top six manufacturers stayed in the same order from 2013, with their percentages changing only slightly.

It isn’t surprising that Innova remains at the top of the disc golf world. They have a long, thriving history, the largest selection of models and plastics, they are made in America, and they sponsor three-time World Champion Paul McBeth. They are an established institution in disc golf.

Because of its dominance, Innova is also sold in department and sporting goods stores, in addition to specialty disc golf shops. For that reason, many respondents are only familiar with Innova.

2014 Survey Change

Last year, in many of the survey questions, several brands were combined and listed as a single manufacturer. For example, Latitude 64 manufactures Dynamic Discs and Westside (also known as Trilogy). This year, “Trilogy” brands had 19% of this pie.

Likewise, MVP and Axiom are made by MVP and 6% of the pie.

This year, and in future surveys, each individual brand will be considered separately so its changes are clearer from year to year. In this summary, we will mention the combined statistics for comparison.

Brand Loyalty

Only 6% of disc golfers are so loyal that they will only throw discs from one manufacturer. Most respondents choose from a variety of brands. That’s important because it says that even though people have their favorite brand, they are willing to try different ones. Of the 6% who only throw one brand, 61% of them chose Innova, while Prodigy and Discraft loyalists represented 14% each. Vibram came in at 3%, Legacy just over 1%, and all other brands less than 1%.

Not surprisingly, when asked if you HAD TO throw only one brand, which you would choose, the results were nearly exactly the same as the favorite brands. Only a percentage point at most separated this category from the favorites. Last year Latitude 64 was selected by 20% of the respondents, but included Westside and Dynamic Discs brands. This year, adding the numbers from those three brands, we get 21%, which is nearly identical.

What does the future hold?

While Innova remains the undisputed king of disc golf, several smaller brands are releasing popular discs and working hard to claim their share of the market. That is good, because competition among manufacturers is healthy for the sport. Several statistics indicate that smaller companies are making headway.

Most Anticipated Releases

To start with, in addition to the fact that most respondents throw several brands of discs, the survey also indicates that they like to know what discs will be released from many different manufacturers. Which brand’s releases are people looking forward to the most?

Innova still leads at 33%. After them is Latitude 64 at 11%. Dynamic Discs was the third most anticipated brand with 10%, followed by Discraft, MVP, and Prodigy with 9%, 8%, and 7% respectively. Westside rounds out the top seven with 5%. Even though 48% of disc golfers chose Innova as their favorite disc company, only 33% anticipate its releases more than other brands.

Last year, Innova received only 16% of the votes, showing a major increase this year. On the contrary, MVP was the most anticipated in 2013 and has dropped off significantly. At the time of this survey in 2013, MVP had just announced the Axiom brand (which is now its own option in this survey), and rumors of their distance drivers were on the horizon.

When we combine the Trilogy numbers for this year, we get a total of 26%, which is up quite a bit from last year’s 18%. Innova’s and the Trilogy’s increases came at the expense of MVP and Prodigy, who decreased 12% and 7% respectively. Discraft’s anticipated releases raised slightly, from 8% to 9%.

Most Innovative Brand

When it comes to innovation, the race is a little tighter among manufacturers. Innova is perceived to be the most innovative company, and garnered 27% of the votes, up from last year’s 17%. MVP was not far behind this year with 19% of respondents.  That is a decrease from 38% last year. Latitude 64 was next with 12%, followed by Dynamic Discs and Prodigy at 9% each. Vibram, the only company making discs out of a different material, carried 7% of the votes. Discraft sat at 5%. Comparing Trilogy brands to last year shows an increase from 11% to 21%, which puts them in second place.

While some brands have taken strides in innovation, we feel that a few have accomplishments worth emphasizing:

Trilogy Brands

In 2014, the efforts put in collectively by Trilogy brands have been amazing and they receive our vote as the most innovative. They have diversified their product lineup, popularized the Missilen, which has divots in the plastic for increased aerodynamic properties, and have launched a new blend of plastic which is durable, transparent, flexible, and grippy. But, outside of the product line itself, Dynamic Discs has raised the bar in marketing and creating a premium identity within the industry. Singling out Dynamic Discs within the Trilogy category, they have launched an app specifically for their home National Tour tournament, the Glass Blown Open (which is already sold out at 900 competitors), they have created beautiful short video teasers for new releases, and they sponsor weekly podcasts (which is not new this year). In the end, hats off to Dynamic Discs for their all around efforts to innovate, not just in plastic, but in overall growth for disc golf.

MVP

For how small and young MVP is, they garner many votes in this category. MVP has the best overmold in disc golf. Because it is so unique, it will always stand out as innovative, even if it was introduced long ago. That’s not to say MVP was not innovative in 2014. This year MVP introduced the only overmold discs to ever see the fairway, and they have expanded their product lineup to bring brilliant colors. It’s clear that with MVP their mantra is “If you are going to do something, do it well”. We sometimes consider MVP the “Apple” of disc golf.

Prodigy

In 2013, Prodigy faired well with the amount of new releases, unique plastic blends, and “easy release technology” (which we don’t hear about often anymore). In 2014, Prodigy introduced a new basket with inner horizontal chains which make a chain-out impossible when you hit the target zone. It will be interesting to see how this innovation affects the sport moving forward.

Innova

Innova does something new on an annual basis. In 2013 they began production of overmold discs. In 2014 they created GStar plastic and released it in several popular molds. GStar is a unique blend which is opaque, flexible, durable, grippy, and attractive.

Largest Impact on Disc Golf

The survey also sought to find out which company had the largest impact on disc golf in 2014. The top vote recipient was Innova, who edged out Prodigy, 26% to 22%. Dynamic Discs received 17% of the votes, Latitude 64 got 8%. Discraft and MVP rounded out the list of companies making the largest impact, with 6% and 5% respectively. Innova and Prodigy sponsor a majority of the most widely recognized and skilled disc golfers in the world. That exposure undoubtedly contributed to the high numbers for those manufacturers in this category.

In addition, Innova’s impact on disc golf for simply being in so many stores cannot be measured. How often are players introduced to disc golf while browsing for discs at Hastings? Even Innova may have a hard time calculating that number. Because of the availability of Innova product, more people become attached to disc golf.

Last year Prodigy was voted as the top company to impact disc golf with 40% of respondents. Innova was a distant second with 16%. MVP held a larger share than this year, sitting at 12%. Latitude 64 took fourth with 11%, compared with this year’s combined Trilogy result of 27%.

Best Reputation in Disc Golf

Which disc golf brand has the best reputation? In the most lopsided category, Innova crushed the competition with 58% of the votes. The next closest was Discraft at a distant 12%. Dynamic Discs had 8%, and Latitude 64 had 7%. MVP and Prodigy tied at 4%. That says a lot about Innova when people who throw other brands still respect them.

Last year Innova also led the category with 51% choosing them. Discraft took second last year with 16%. Latitude 64 and MVP rounded out the top four with 11% and 7%. The Trilogy result for this year is 16%, which is still significantly behind the leader, Innova.

Summary

Innova dominates the disc golf world, but certainly has a lot of competitors hungry for a bigger slice of that growing pie. What would it take to unseat the giant? Major breakthroughs are rare in disc golf. True, discs come along that certainly make waves, but what new development will occur that might allow one of the smaller manufacturers to become the new number one? Maybe a new plastic type? Or new material altogether?  It’s more likely that smaller brands will just need to expand their lines to offer a bigger variety of speed and flight characteristics. And, just keep getting their name out there. Sponsoring disc golfers, sponsoring major tournaments, and offering specialty tournaments might turn the tide for Innova’s competitors. Perhaps smaller companies might focus on introducing new players to the sport. That would grow the sport, the customer base, and possibly create lifelong, dedicated fans of their brand.

Thanks to all of you who took the time to share a little part of your disc golf world. The results will be posted in periodic blogs at InfiniteDiscs.com, each blog covering different aspects of the survey.  If you would like to be alerted to new posts, scroll down to join the Infinite Discs mailing list.

In coming articles we will explore more nuances of respondent’s choices for tops brands. We will examine who the typical disc golfers is, and how that affects which brands they prefer. We will also look at who is switching brands and which companies they are moving to and from.

State of Disc Golf 2015: Introduction

Overview

Between December 5th and December 15th, 2014, exactly 5,038 participants completed “The State of Disc Golf: 2015 Survey.” The survey can be summarized as an accurate representation of self-selecting disc golfers.

Accuracy

It is impossible to know how many disc golfers there are in the world right now. A larger survey of random Americans would be necessary to determine the approximate number.

If we assume that there are 1,000,000 disc golfers, this survey has, with 99% confidence, a margin of error of +/- 1.81%. We can also say with 95% confidence, that there is a margin of error of +/- 1.38%. These numbers were found using a simple calculator here.

Methodology

This survey was first published and announced on December 5th by Infinite Discs. It was then posted on Facebook and Twitter by Infinite Discs. After the initial announcement, it was picked up by others and posted and shared in many social outlets, such as Reddit. This survey was also published on the PDGA Facebook page and was e-mailed by the PDGA to those who are included in the PDGA mailing list.

This survey is not truly scientific, as participants were self-selecting. It was published that the survey was just over 10 minutes in length, and $1,305 in prize merchandise would be awarded to random participants.

One may argue that casual disc golfers are not enticed by the prizes, and would therefore not elect to participate in the survey. Therefore, those who participated in the survey may generally be more passionate about the sport. This survey is not a sample of the average American. It is instead a sample of the disc golfer who is involved in the sport to a degree that they would have heard about the survey through any of the means mentioned above.

Sponsors

These sponsors donated prior to the survey closing, but were not announced until after.

  • MVP – $180 in discs
  • Dynamic Discs – $355 in merchandise
  • Prodigy – $220 in discs
  • Aerobie – $150 in discs
  • Vibram – $100 in discs
  • Infinite Discs – $50 in gift cards
  • PDGA – $160 in memberships
  • Innova – $90 in discs

Avoiding Bias

We felt very strongly about avoiding bias in this survey. Through e-mail we discouraged all parties who may be interested in obtaining favorable results from advertising or promoting this survey. We informed manufacturers that if they did promote the survey, they may be accused of obtaining bias results. As far as we are aware, no manufacturer promoted this survey.

We also encouraged manufacturers to donate to this survey, to entice respondents to complete the survey. Manufacturers who donated are listed above. Each of these manufacturers and donors understood that they would be listed as a survey sponsor after the survey had closed.

Fans of certain brands, who are bias, shared this survey. Therefore, this survey includes results from bias individuals and groups. This is fine, as the State of Disc Golf finds the bias of fans equally important; we simply did not want fan bias to be unfairly and heavily weighted from promotion of the manufacturer which they admire.

Publication Schedule

We anticipate to have our series of articles published before the end of March, 2015.

Thank You!

The results of this survey are immensely beneficial to disc golf. A survey of this scale allows us, and you, to do more for disc golf. We encourage you to use the data you find in this survey to promote disc golf courses, and to persuade city officials how beneficial this sport can be in your area. We would love to hear about how you use the data.

Welcome Feedback

If you have any questions regarding the survey, please comment below. You may also e-mail support@infinitediscs.com with any feedback.

2014 Holiday Buying Guide

You want to spend your Holiday money, and you want to spend it on disc golf. If you are looking for yourself, or somebody else, here are several creative Holiday gifts that can’t go wrong.  We’re breaking this post into two groups, top selling discs, and everything non-disc.

While you’re considering which of the specials to take advantage of, you may want to also slip a few of these things into the stocking as some extras:

Holiday Shipping

If haven’t placed your order yet, your discs will likely arrive after Christmas. If you have placed an order, and your discs are still not there, keep in mind that delivery services may fall behind during this season.

Infinite Discs is not responsible for delays caused by delivery services.

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