JHern wrote:I think it is more complicated than just the 9 shots that Mark Ellis was proposing as a complete set (left, straight, right; short, medium long)....
Well that is not what I said. I said there are 9 BASIC shots.
Steve's original question asked about BASIC and ADVANCED shots to comprise a Complete Bag of Shots. This question is so broad it is sort of like asking everything we know about throwing a disc. So rather than tackling the entire question (or completely ignoring the thread) I gave a BASIC answer.
Whiz gave an even more simplified answer than I did. Being inspired by his clever answer I would offer:
Basic Shots: Any shots you are good at.
Advanced Shots: Any shots you are not good at.
When you speak of throwing straight, do you mean the initial flight or the resulting landing? For example, picking a spot you want the disc to land and then using your alignment/aim and the discs properties to get there?
My response: Straight like an arrow. Straight like a frozen rope. Straight like a line (in mathematics). The longer you can make a shot stay on a straight path the better.
During the initial flight and the continuing until the disc slows down toward the end of its flight you want to have the ability to make a disc go straight when that shot is called for. Compare the flights of an Ultimate disc and a Golf disc: The Ultimate disc goes straight pretty easily but Golf discs (especially drivers) generally do not. This is a function of the design of the discs and allows drivers to glide so far. When most of us first threw golf discs we thought they were crazy overstable, cutting so hard at the end of their flights they were uncontrollable to us.
The gold standard for a great control driver is a disc which, in YOUR hands, at the Speed YOU throw, when thrown flat will start out straight, stay basically straight in flight and finish straight as well. I have some runs of overstable Flashes which do this for me at about 80% power. If you keep looking and keep working on throwing flat you may find the driver which does this for you also. But even if you never run into that semi-magical disc, finding something close to it is still great.
It is much easier to make a putter or a mid go dead nuts straight than a driver. Beat up versions of Rattlers, Magnets and Buzzz's work best for me.
For every disc in your bag (from flippy putters to overstable drivers) learning how to get it to flatten out in the middle of its flight will teach you better control of that disc. Most shots in the game are about hitting a line. Straight is often the safest line. Once throwing straight becomes a conscious goal you will become a better player.
But most holes are not perfectly straight so why concentrate on throwing straight? Because there is greater carry-over value, greater skill acquisition. The game is easier once you can throw straight.