Wednesday, 30 September 2009

xEUCF finals and moving on!

After so much effort xEUCF is finally over. We have a whole host of new European Champions and some unbelievable performances showcased to boot. For complete details visit the website once more.

As a very brief highlight, congratulations to

Chevy, the new Open European Champions
Iceni who are the Womens European Champions
Brighton, the Mixed European Champions
Helsinki, the Masters European Champions

Way to go UK taking 3/4 golds!

Today was the first day I haven't worn my leg brace in 7 weeks. I get my scan results next wednesday so I hope with the start of a new season I can look forward to getting out and playing. It was one of the most difficult emotions I've experience in a long time when I was so jubilated seeing my team playing at xEUCF while being so utterly gutted to not be able to play alongside my amazing teamates. Well done to Thundering Herd for their hard fought and well deserved 7th place finish and I can't wait to play Ultimate with you all again! Congrats also on being the top spirit scoring UK team :)

I've now also moved into my new flat and things are slowly returning to normal after a mental few months. So what next?

The students freshers are all attending their first training sessions this week and the indoors season is just about to kick off. Bring on the off season training and here's to world championships in Prague 2010!

Friday, 25 September 2009

xEUCF day 1 and 2!

The days at xEUCF are looooong. Waking up at 6.30 with games kicking off at 9am and going all the way through to 9pm, that is a LOT of ultimate. The guys in the media centre on site are doing a good job of updating the xEUCF twitter account regularly. You can follow them here. Its turning out to be the easiest way to get lots of info to people quickly. Feel free to contact them if you are wondering about anything that is going on. The daily newsletter is the other way for a broader slice of xEUCF goings on. Here are the links to the day 1 and day 2 newsletters.

I wrote a couple of short pieces for the Day 1 newsletter (London Teams at xEUCF and Mixed Division Proceedings) while Tim and Will have been working hard throughout both days to make sure there are 700 copies ready to read in the morning. Keep it up guys!

Check out the xEUCF webpage for upto date results, schedules and other bits and pieces.

My highlights so far have been catching the end of the Clapham (16) vs Skogs (15) showgame last night and watching the Herd (15) vs Outsiterz (11) showmatch earlier this evening. Everything still to play for in so many games tomorrow! Hopefully I will get down there again in between moving house :)

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

In the news.

With xEUCF starting tomorrow it would be rude not to mention it...You know what it's all about now so I will just say if you are around London then it will be worth your while heading over there between thursday and sunday to check out some quality Ultimate on a large scale. There will be plenty going on for spectators and you can follow games and results through various twitter accounts, blogs, and the xEUCF home page amongst other sources.

Every time a new resource becomes available to the wider Ultimate community I get the feeling that Ultimate is going to improve in all aspects, on and off the pitch, for a long time into the future...

Not only is it one of the fastest growing sports but big tourneys regularly find there way into national papers, most recently xEUCF and the World Games. This can only be a good thing in terms of exposure and raising public awareness of the sport!

I'll be mostly posting links to coverage of xEUCF on here over the next few days.

See you tomorrow at xEUCF then!

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Pushing forwards

Across the world, ever increasing numbers of people are stepping up to play their part in moulding the sport of Ultimate into what they want it to be. Check out this video for a tournement whose aim is to spread the culture of Ultimate beyond just the players. Looking at the effort put in so far, it might just work!

Check out the website:

Look at the stadium it will be played in...

Look at some of the confirmed teams:

It's not going to be any ordinary Ultimate tourney...

Thursday, 17 September 2009

xEUCF Schedule released

So ahead of the start of Euros next thursday, the schedule has been released. Check out the xEUCF website for all of the details.

I'm frantically looking for a new house in central london and it's becoming the nightmare story I have heard so often. Between the estate agents and the compromising there is barely room to think let alone work, or blog.

Anyway, as gutted as I am to not be playing next week at Euros I'm excited now about being part of the newsletter and online team as one of the volunteers. Should be a good way to ease the pain of missing out due to injury. I might do a self-therapy injury update blog post just so I remember that it is moving forwards...6 weeks and counting now...

Here's some interesting moments in ultimate captured on camera for your viewing pleasure, they were all found at

Monday, 14 September 2009

Student Ultimate

The student season is coming back around! By the end of this month, 1000s of 18 and 19 years olds across UK universities will have signed up to something that could change their lives...About 10% of those that have signed up will make it through the first few training sessions and will learn how to throw and catch. 1% of those that originally sign up will have found something that for the next 3 years at least, will become a major part of their social and sporting lives.

Pretty exciting! I'm going into my 6th year at University College London now and I still look forward to teaching the basics and seeing guys and girls who have never played, quickly make new friends and have plenty of fun times. This year, I may be taking more of an advisory type role however and just let them get on with it. I'll be sure to be there if they get to Nationals though :)

Do you have connections to a UK university ultimate team? In the past 5 years, the online resources for ultimate have increased massively. Hopefully this will level the playing field where before, the team with a couple of star players were the only ones with all of the information on how to develop a great team. There will soon be posts on here about student ultimate goings on, after xEUCF!

If you found this post interesting, you might also like to read:
Awesome US college highlight video: why not?

Mamabird Highlights 2008- Nationals from RabbitProductions on Vimeo.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Monkey Foo, Bourg d'Oisans

Last weekend I was lucky enough to go to Monkey Foo (although not lucky enough to actually be playing). Needless to say it was an awesome experience and I hope to go back next year when I'm not on crutches. My team, Heffalump, won the Spirit award which we were absolutely chuffed about and it was a perfect way to tie up a very fun trip. Enjoy the photos and be there next year!

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Twitter, Ultispace and Online Content

I enjoy updating this blog and I want to be able to do so as often as possible. One of the basic aims is to provide new content for you to come and have a read of, watch or listen to as well there being content that you will hopefully be able to think about, discuss and (dis)agree with.

To this end I'm going to mix in some shorter posts containing interesting and relevant things I come across. For example, today a brand new site went live with the aim of being an all encompassing ultimate frisbee website. It's called Ultispace and I would compare it to ffindr which the worldwide Ultimate community has really taken to, allowing it to become a handy resource for ultimate around the world. Ultispace brings into the mix a forum, video and photo gallery to the one-stop-shop ultimate website format and only time will tell if we take to it and allow it to fulfill its potential. Go and register here.

To also increase the amount of new content I've taken my first steps into Twitter. reaction to it since 2006 when it first launched. Why would anyone care what you are doing at all hours? Well thankfully that's not all it can be used for. I finally realised this during the UPA college Nationals. There would be no way for me to get live updates of whats going on at this tournement. I wouldn't even be able to find out who won until someone wrote a blog post about it or the results went up on the UPA website etc. The way I see it now (and many have been doing for a long while now) is that those at a tournement can send out what are basically txt message updates of what is going on and I am able to receive just the ones relevant to my interest. I can't believe I'm actually promoting the use of Twitter but it does seem to make sense now.

As I'm no longer going to be playing at xEUCF due to my injury 4 weeks ago, I finally decided that I would be a volunteer at the tourney. I was going to be there anyway supporting my team and this way I can hopefully be usefull too! Anyway, as it stands, I plan to use twitter while I'm there to update anyone who cares to follow the xEUCF goings on. I've even dedicated a part of the sidebar on this blog to live UK Ultimate updates and specifically at the moment xEUCF updates from a number of sources! Seems pretty clever. So if you would like to be kept up to date either via the internet or (apparently) straight to your phone, (I havent done that yet but when I'm updating from xEUCF I guess I will be using my phone) go and register on twitter and search for 'ultimateuk', thats where I will be updating from...

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

European Championship Finals!

There is little over 2 weeks to go before the start of the European Ultimate Championship Finals. Teams from across Europe have been gearing up for months ready for their arrival at the Harlington Sports Ground located just outside of London. The regional qualifiers for the open division have all taken place while the womens, mixed and masters division teams have all been working hard so that on the 27th September 2009, they will have the chance of being crowned the 2009 European Champions.

To get a bit of background, have a read of these two posts, nice and informative!

European Ultimate Championship Series

The History of European Ultimate Club Championships

This year there will be 38 open teams coming from 14 different countries! On top of that there are 16 womens teams, 20 mixed teams and 6 masters teams. That's well over 1000 players all at xEUCF!

So who are the recent past winners of such a massive tournememt?

2008 EUCF in Paris, France winners:
Open: Skogshyddan
Womens: Woodchicas

2007 EUCF in Basel, Switzerland winners:
Open: Clapham
Womens: Woodchicas

2006 EUCF in Florence, Italy winners:
Open: Skogshyddan
Womens: Iceni

(have a look at the post linked above to find out where the mixed and masters divisions were!)

So 2009 xEUCF in London, United Kingdom: who do you think will win?!

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Staying informed, rational ignorance and the importance of the individual.

No matter at what level of Ultimate you play, it is of benefit and value to all involved for you to stay informed. This applies not only to what is going on within your own team but also your local teams, national teams as well as everything else that goes on within the UKU community.

It isn't even about how involved you wish to be as an individual. There's a concept known as 'rational ignorance'. When the effort of informing or educating ones self on a particular issue outweighs the potential benefit that said knowledge would provide, the person who chooses to stay uneducated is said to be 'rationally ignorant'. The most valuable thing any of us have to offer is our time and so using it in this sitution would surely be irrational and indeed a waste of our time...

There is a problem however, as soon as a large group of people are called upon to make an important decision, the ability of that group to consistently come to the best outcome is severely impaired. Just look at the government, who voted Gordon Brown as Prime Minister?

With this in mind we should do all ourselves a favour and stay informed. Apply this to everything you do but as this is a UK Ultimate blog, I'll apply it to that. Ultimate here is still in its early days, we get to shape what it is going to be in the future! There has been a recent discussion on EuroDisc about where Ultimate is heading, if you are reading this blog you likely enjoy playing Ultimate at the least and probably care about it, after all we do give to it much of our most valued commodity (not money). So do yourself a favour, don't under estimate the individual, speak up and play Ultimate!

On to the useful bit of this post, below are a number of easy ways that you can stay directly informed with everything that is going on, so many times do captains and coaches at all levels try to disseminate information to their players only to be told later by a player that they didn't receive anything. Stop being ignorant. The internet is phenomenal in that it has the power to immediately erase ignorance if you allow it to.

Again, apply this to everything but this is a UK Ultiamte blog so,

First of all sign up to your own teams mailing list. As you have already read this far, you are probably the sort of person who doesn't actually need to be reading this but at least you can point others in its direction. A lot of teams use private forums, yahoo or google groups. Don't be the person who always needs to be passed on information individually, get signed up.

The UKU website has a comprehensive page of links where you can simply follow the ones that apply to you . You can find it here. Of all of them, make sure to sign upto BritDisc

EuroDisc. Don't be intimidated by the fact that your messages will be read Europe-wide. There are often discussions about the current development of Ultimate. Have a look at the archives and sign up here

If you are UK student Ultimate player, sign up at uniultimate to stay informed.

A good forum where you can ask any Ultimate related questions and get answers from around the world pretty quickly is Check it out!

BananaCut is a great website that allows you to follow current Ultimate related goings on very easily.

Ffindr is another very good resource for finding out what is going on both local to you and around the world.

If you know of any other good resources, share!

I'm off to Monkey Foo in Grenoble now, ta ra!

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

xEUCF update, ECC and Chesapeake.

So all of the 2009 regional EUCS events have taken place and the results of those teams that have qualified are filtering through. It makes you realise how far we have to go as a sport when it's so difficult, without knowing individuals at each event, to find out what is going on at the elite end of Ultimate. There is certainly plenty of movement in the right direction however and it's developing positively far more than other sports have done in the past and currently are, so thats +1 for Ultimate!

So here are the div 1 open qualifiers to xEUCF in London 24-27 sept from all regions (click logo for link to xEUCF website)

South West

1. FAB (Bern, Switzerland)
2. Jack'Suns, (Fontenay-le-Comte, France)
3. Freespeed (Basel, Switzerland)
4. CUSB (Bologna, Italy)
North East

1. VIF (Sweden)
2. Karhukopla (Finland)
3. Skogs (Sweden)

4. Orebro (Sweden)


1. Fire (London, UK)
2. Clapham (London, UK)
3. Fusion (UK (Scotland))
4. Chevy (Manchester, UK)

Central East

1. Woodies (Germany)
2. Feldrenner (Germany)
3. Silence (Czech Republic)
4. Ragnarok (Denmark)
Amazing! xEUCF is going to be pretty awesome...A few things I wanted to point out about these goings on. Firstly, the UK dominates the West Europe region. Secondly, the two strongest teams in the UK this year in both open and womens divisions recently went to test their skills against some of the top North American teams. Clapham went to the Emerald City Classic tournament in Burlington, Washington and Iceni went to Chesapeake in Poolesville, Maryland.
(click the logos to find out complete results). These two tournaments are known for the rediculous quality of the Ultimate, pretty much the highest level of club ultimate you will find in any tournaments around the world. Even so, what are potentially the two best teams in Europe (let alone the UK) managed just 3 wins out of 16 games between them. (2 out of 10 for Clapham and 1 out of 6 for Iceni).
I don't know the ins and outs of any extenuating circumstances like missing few or many key players or individual game stats but I know that whoever went in these teams will have been giving it their all on the pitch. Thus exemplifying the quality of Ultimate in North America when compared to the rest of the world....?