While ultimate remains largely on hold, disc sports enthusiasts around the world can now rekindle their competitive fire through USA Ultimate’s newest event – The National Skills Challenge!
After launching a new, interactive skills challenge module on its mobile app earlier this summer, USA Ultimate developed the concept into a full-fledged, competitive event open to both individuals and teams.
The National Skills Challenge features a dozen different activities designed to test an athlete’s accuracy, agility, speed and other ultimate-related skills. Players can participate in any or all of the 12 skills challenges and even enter a multi-skill "Discathlon" competition as an individual or part of a four-person team. Divisions are offered across different age, gender and skill categories for both individual and team classifications.
Both the individual and team Discathlon competition is broken up into two phases: a qualifying round (Oct. 5-18) and a finals round (Oct. 22-25), while single skills competition runs from Oct. 5-18.
Top finishers in both the individual and team Discathlon competitions will receive a commemorative gold, silver or bronze Discraft UltraStar as the event’s inaugural medalists. Additional prizes from USA Ultimate, VC Ultimate and other event partners will be raffled off to players with opportunities to increase the number of raffle entries through competitive performance and social media engagement.
"The National Skills Challenge is the first of several new events and programs we anticipate introducing over the coming weeks and months, and we encourage everyone who loves ultimate to compete and see how you or your team stacks up against players from across the world," commented USA Ultimate CEO Tom Crawford. "The creative team here at HQ and a group of key volunteers have monitored the many obstacles thrown our way this year and remain committed to developing fun, safe and competitive opportunities for our community to stay connected and continue to engage in disc sports. We hope and believe the National Skills Challenge, as well as other new programs coming soon, will ultimately take on a life of their own and present new ways for all our members to play and compete for years to come."
The cost to participate is just $5 per individual and $20 per team with a portion of the proceeds supporting USA Ultimate’s equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) programs (see details below). All USA Ultimate members are eligible to compete while others can become a one-time event member to enter.
As a virtual event, competitors can participate and record their results from anywhere, safely adhering to any local health and safety guidelines.
To learn more about how to compete, including a list of individual and team divisions, eligibility, rules, registration, event schedule, and more, please review the guidelines below.
COMPETE IN THE SKILLS CHALLENGE AND SUPPORT USA ULTIMATE’S EDI EFFORTS.
USA Ultimate strongly believes a diverse community will enrich people’s ultimate experience and the sport will be enhanced by the active inclusion of underrepresented communities. In support of this principle, we are committing 20% of all revenue generated from entry fees and merchandise sales from the 2020 USA Ultimate National Skills Challenge directly to our equity, diversity and inclusion efforts. Those efforts include:
- Providing financial support and resources to local affiliates to offer playing opportunities for racially and ethnically underrepresented youth.
- Hosting webinars and forums with players, coaches and organizers to create inclusive environments.
- Lowering financial barriers to participation via Play it Forward and the Delrico Johnson Fund.
- Partnering with grassroots programs to raise awareness of racial and socioeconomic inequities in ultimate.
For the most recent update on the EDI work USA Ultimate is doing, check out the July update.