Being from the US, I remember in college Ultimate Frisbee was the cool thing to do. Guys and girls would grab their sweatbands and wear obnoxiously bright workout gear just to make things a little bit more vibrant. I’ve played a few times and it’s a lot of fun, but I was surprised to see that there is actually a group in Amman that gets together to play Ultimate, they call themselves the Jordan Flying Disc Federation (JFDF).
To find out more about them, I sat down with their president, Nate. Here’s what he had to say…
What is Ultimate?
First things first, for those that don’t know what Ultimate is, let’s define it as simply as possible –
“Ultimate is played with a disc/frisbee, between two teams of seven players on a large rectangular pitch. A line drawn across the pitch at either end creates two “endzones” (like in American Football). These are the goal-scoring areas. A goal is scored when a team completes a pass to a player standing (or more likely running) in the endzone they are attacking.”
Still don’t understand? Visit whatisultimate.com/what-is-ultimate/ for all the details.
How & Why JFDF Started
The federation’s earliest records suggest that the first members of the Ultimate community came together in the summer of 2009. However, it wasn’t until early 2015 when they really started organizing efforts to increase the quality of play and numbers in attendance. It was then that a team with a basic leadership structure was established (dubbed the “Bedouin Falcons”) in the fall of that year. By fall 2016 their captain ended up being elected to be the first President of what is now known as the Jordan Flying Disc Federation (JFDF).
The sport of Ultimate has been growing quickly in Jordan and the Middle East in general. Presently the JFDF is applying to become a member of the World Flying Disc Federation (WFDF), which is the official governing body for Ultimate (among other disc sports). This represents the direction of international standards of play, development, and recognition that they are heading towards as a community of players. Even so, in their weekly events and practices, their chief aspirations remain to create an environment where new people are welcome to learn Ultimate and a hospitable community that thrives on this game that they love.
How to Join an Ultimate Game with JFDF
Everyone is welcome to join, whether you’re a complete newbie or skilled with the disc. All you have to do is visit the JFDF Ultimate Facebook page for days and times when they play. If you are new, then you can reach out to one of the leaders on any given night. They will find someone there who can help you learn the basics of the game of Ultimate.
Presently the JFDF Ultimate team plays 2 times a week (on Tuesday evening and Friday mornings). They are planning on expanding to 2-3 more days/locations in Amman, and perhaps to promote on their Facebook page and events with a group in Aqaba who plays Ultimate down there.
All events can be found here: facebook.com/JFDFUltimate/events