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Could we see Ultimate Frisbee in the Summer Olympics?

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Patrick van der Valk (l) playing at Wildwood Tournament - The World's Largest Beach Ultimate Tournament

Patrick van der Valk (l) playing at Wildwood Tournament - The World's Largest Beach Ultimate Tournament

Credit:

Brian Canniff for UltiPhotos

Ultimate Frisbee just moved one step closer to being in the next Olympic Games. 

The International Olympic Committee weighed in on Sunday and recognized the organization, the World Flying Disc Federation, which oversees Ultimate and Beach Ultimate Frisbee. But recognition doesn't actually mean the sport will be included in future Olympic games. There are many hurdles to overcome, says Patrick van der Valk of the World Flying Disc Federation.

"We need at least 75 countries where ultimate is being played. And we're at 62, 63, I think. When you have played in 75 countries, that's when you get your shot to get in."

Although they are calling this the "sport of flying discs," is this really a competitive sport?

Just "come and play" and try it yourself, says van der Valk. "Yes, I know, people think, 'oh Frisbee... is great. You're just throwing a Frisbee." He likens the game to both American football and basketball.

The game is played on grass or sand with two endzones. The goal is to catch the Frisbee in the endzone, as in a TD pass in American football. You're not allowed to run with a Frisbee in your hand and someone is trying to block you from throwing to your teammate, like basketball.

"It's a very dynamic game. It's very physically intense and there's a lot of tactics and strategy involved." 

Van der Valk says with any luck, Ultimate Frisbee could be a part of the 2020 or 2024 Olympics.

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