- Our Team
Some much-needed good news came to the Disc Golf community today when Disc Golf Pro Tour (DGPT) made the big announcement that they will return to Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) Elite Series sanctioned play this June. The Tour came to a grinding halt on March 13, 2020, in the middle of the Waco Annual Charity Open in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Disc Golf Pro Tour’s announcement came on the same day as the PDGA update that 23 states and 11 countries are now available for PDGA sanctioning. While we’re starting to see sports and other businesses open up again, COVID-19 is still a major concern and both the PDGA and the DGPT have presented detailed plans outlining new policies and best practices to keep players and staff safe during events.
The Disc Golf Pro Tour will restart in the Midwest in Emporia, KS, with a brand new event — The Dynamic Discs Open on June 26-28. The San Francisco Open and Portland Open have both been canceled in order to stay in alignment with local government guidelines. The Portland Open will be replaced by another new event — the Preserve Championship in Clearwater, MN on July 3-5. The Jonesboro Open has been rescheduled to Oct 1-3. With these changes, the DGPT will continue to have an Elite Series consisting of 11 events, as originally planned. The Tour also plans on keeping 7 of 9 original Silver Series events for a schedule of 18 total events in 2020.
To protect the safety of players, staff, and volunteers, the DGPT has outlined a detailed three-phased approach to resuming play. When the Tour resumes in June with Phase 1, there will be strict precautions in place. The Phase 1 guidelines include:
The DGPT will also provide optional COVID-19 testing for all players. If any player shows possible symptoms of COVID-19 or has come into contact with someone who has tested positive, testing and a negative result will be required in order to participate in the event.
Once state and local governments declare that it’s safe for gatherings of 50 or more people, Phase 2 of the DGPT safety procedures will go into effect. During Phase 2, limited spectators will be allowed and players will be grouped into foursomes. Testing, social distancing, and sanitization procedures established in Phase 1 will continue in Phase 2.
While it will be quite different than what we’ve seen in past years, we’re unbelievably excited to see the Tour return. As a DGPT partner and with several members of our Savage Squad participating, we’re unbelievably excited about this news and for the future of Disc Golf. We can’t wait to follow the coverage and cheer everyone on while social distancing in our homes.Continue reading
We're all getting through this quarantine in different ways, and we love hearing updates from all of you on how you're staying healthy despite the circumstances. N.C.-based pro Spikeball player and personal trainer Tori Farlow (who we profiled on the Savage blog back in February) has been keeping us motivated with active and upbeat Instagram posts, so we tapped her to share some of what's gotten her through the past weeks. Take it away, Tori!
Quarantine life has definitely been a huge change for all of us, and not all of it has been positive — but that doesn’t mean it can’t be used for good.
Like I say to most people, including my clients, everything is transformed through perspective. Whatever you focus on magnifies.
Here is a glimpse into what my life has been like as of late, and things I have realized for my own positivity and health. No one is the same, so I’m not saying this will work for you, but I do hope that it pushes you in a direction or a realization that does help you!
For me, this requires waking up without a screen. Whether that means making breakfast, doing yoga, or spending time with my dog, I try to allow my brain to wake up in the morning without screens, especially knowing that I work throughout the day from my computer or phone.
When you think about it, if we are looking through emails or social media right when we wake up, we are training our minds to wake up stressed. We see all of the work that we need to do, immediately compare our lives and bodies to others, exercise FOMO, and hype up our insecurities — all in a matter of seconds once our eyes open. Before we even get out of bed, we possibly have a feeling of less worth and joy without even realizing it.
I have noticed a difference in my mood and productivity throughout the day when I wake up without these things, even though it’s sadly not easy. It had become such a routine for me to look at my phone as the first and last thing I did in the day, and I never saw it as an issue. I definitely didn’t figure this out on my own. It took me spending time with a very smart, seasoned, and loving human to even realize that’s what I was doing and that it would be in my best interest to make a change.
For me, the most trouble is in the morning, but it might be the night time for you. Allow yourself to be quiet, still, and present. My favorite way to cool down is with some jams, tea, and a lit candle. Find what soothes you the best!
I am used to lifting weights 4-6 days out of the week, and lifting pretty heavy most of those days. I’ve been doing this for eight years now and my passion continues to grow. The most strict cardio you’ll find me doing is five minutes on a bike or stairmaster as a warmup because I prefer to get my cardio from playing sports. I coach soccer as well as play in multiple soccer leagues, travel for Spikeball, and play as many sports as I can get my hands on, so I stay pretty busy and active. With the feeling like everything got stripped away from me, this time of quarantine has been a test of my patience, determination, and creativity. I have had to come to grips with the fact that since I cannot change the current reality — there is no sense in being upset over it. The new question is, “what am I going to do to continue to try to be the best version of myself?”
I have done way more bodyweight and strict cardio workouts than I ever have before and I honestly think it has been a healthy break for me. I have been able to give my body rest when it needs, push my body to new and different limits, and show my body that different is okay. Most importantly, I’ve learned how to love my body through those differences. I’ve had to realize what I truly want out of this time and make the choice to be productive even though it’s much easier to sulk.
Some of my favorite workouts during this time have been…
I graduated in 2018 with a degree in exercise science and have been a soccer coach and personal trainer since then. I started to lose steam with my training position because I wasn’t sure of the full value of what I was offering. I wasn’t finding my passion in it anymore. I was going through the motions, and while I felt like I didn’t deserve that, I was realizing more and more that my clients didn’t either. If you can’t show up for yourself, then you also can’t show up for others the way that you want or the way that they deserve.
So, I redirected my attention to why I do what I do. I thought of the reasons why I was so drawn to coaching and it was because I was able to work with girls who trusted me with more than just their skill training. They trusted me with their home life situations, friendships, breakups, and all the worries under the sun. I felt purpose when I was being a mentor and realized a huge reason of why I even stay in shape myself and why I love exercise — it’s an amazing outlet with incredible mental health benefits.
So how could I bring all of those things together? With the help of some amazing people, I was pushed and encouraged to start my own online wellness business. It’s not just about the workouts anymore. It’s about full-body wellness and health. Most of the time I spend with my clients one-on-one is by working through mental perspectives and how to truly love our mind and body during the journey, not just the destination. It’s always about the big picture.
I’m not saying it is going to be easy, but I am saying it is going to be worth it. Once we can sit down, accept, and embrace life for what it currently is, then we are more able to move forward in a positive manner.
Whatever you focus on magnifies.Continue reading
A lot has happened in the nearly two months since we first posted about the effect of COVID-19 on Savage and XII Brands (which includes partner companies Five Ultimate and ARIA Discs). Like large and small business around the world, our operations have been deeply impacted by the pandemic. Like others, we have been struggling to survive.
There were definitely moments when we didn't know if we could get through this. As sporting events were canceled around the world, we recognized there would not be a need for our services for the foreseeable future. Incoming orders dried up almost immediately, and we were forced to lay off a large portion of our staff. We simply did not have the revenue to pay them anymore.
Since March, we have been forging ahead with a dramatically reduced number of team members. We implemented new safety and sanitation measures in our production facility to keep our remaining staffers healthy while catching up with remaining orders. Things slowed down, but with our reduced staff, we still struggled to keep up.
We also had to think of new ways to make money in order to pay our bills and our skeleton crew's salaries. We started pushing our Neckies, and prioritizing those orders, knowing that our customers needed face coverings ASAP. Our sewing team started making masks to donate to local healthcare workers. We sorted through old merch stored away at HQ and hosted sales to try to bring in some money. We even started to explore new markets, including making scrubs.
Still, our money was running out, and we got to the point where we wondered if we'd have to close our doors completely. Then just in time, in late April we received our PPP loan as well as a grant to help us not only keep the lights on, but also bring back many of our team members.
The future is still uncertain for our industry and the sports that we work with, but we are forging ahead with the hope that things will return to normal in the not-so-distant future. We are thrilled to have so many of our team members back working for Savage and XII Brands, and to finally have the staff we need to be able to catch up on outstanding orders.
To our customers who have been so very patient and understanding as we work through this, we want to extend our deepest gratitude. It's because of you that we have remained functioning, and will hopefully continue to do so as we figure out what life looks like in a post-pandemic world.
For those of you asking where your late orders are, we are happy to report that we can finally give you some answers, thanks to our recently replenished workforce:
Again, we thank each and every one of you for your orders, your support, and your patience. Your kind emails and tweets and Instagram messages have added some brightness to this dark time, and served as a much-needed reminder of why we do what we do. We think of you as family, and we're excited to get through this together and move on to the other side.Continue reading
In the span of just a few tumultuous days, the sports world ground to a halt and social distancing became the norm — leaving many of us feeling unmoored. Humans are social beings, and sports are truly about so much more than the game itself. While we love the intensity and fun of playing, the community and social aspects are just as important — and one of the main reasons why we love sports like Ultimate Frisbee, Spikeball, Quidditch, Disc Golf, and Dodgeball so much.
So what happens when high-fives are suddenly forbidden, all social gatherings and games are canceled, local hangouts are temporarily closed, and social distancing becomes a critical part of staying safe and healthy? We get creative and come up with new ways to stay connected to our friends, family, and teammates. Social interaction, bonding, and coming together as a community are probably more important now than ever, which is why we’ve come up with a list of 10 fun and creative ways to help you stay connected.
Host a Virtual Group Lunch or Coffee — When you’d normally be at practice, do a full-team coffee hour or eat a meal via Skype or Google Hangouts video chat. Having a set time to bring everyone together as a group helps to maintain a routine and stay connected and is a good way to check in on everyone.
Go Outside! — Large social gatherings are off-limits, and maintaining a distance of six feet is encouraged, but unless you’re in a city or state where you’re barred from leaving your house for unnecessary reasons, you should absolutely be going outside and getting some fresh air and a bit of exercise. Take a friend or two and go on a hike or a jog or bike ride (give the handlebars a good wipe with sanitizer before and after). So long as you’re all healthy/asymptomatic, refrain from high-fives, and maintain a safe distance apart, some time outdoors with a couple of friends should be totally okay.
Have a Remote Workout Sesh — Set up a group video chat and have your team captain or another volunteer lead the group in a basic workout or yoga session. Even though you can’t get out and play together, you can still stay in shape and game-ready for when seasons start up again. Group motivation and holding each other accountable is a great way to stay fit and healthy together so you can dominate next season. Stay tuned to the Savage Blog, Facebook, and Instagram for some tips and home exercises to help.
Do a Group Photo Challenge — A photo challenge is a great way to stay busy and have some fun together. Decide on your approach (Googling “photo challenge” will give you plenty of options to choose from, but here’s a good basic one). Every day, you each have to take a photo that fits the theme for that day then share in a group chat or on social with your own hashtag.
Play Mobile Games — The great thing about mobile games is that everyone has a smartphone, and most of these games are free. Draw Something, Words With Friends, and Drawful are pretty much modern classics at this point. Ever get into a cut-throat game of Draw Something with your grandparents? If not, you have 100% been missing out.
Host a Virtual Game Night — If you’re more a fan of playing board games and missing your regular Cards Against Humanity throwdown or poker night, there are also plenty of options for playing board and card games online with your mates. Monopoly, UNO, Yahtzee Party, and poker are all solid options for a virtual game night. There’s also a fun Cards Against Humanity clone that includes a very necessary group chat feature since commenting and laughing over the card combos is an essential part of the game.
Organize a Virtual Book Club — Google Play, Open Library, Free eBooks, and Project Gutenberg offer an extensive array of free eBook options to choose from. If you don’t feel like falling down a black hole of book options, r/freeEBOOKS is a great place to find solid recommendations. Other than entertainment and offering mental escape, plenty of books can also impart valuable lessons in leadership and teamwork. Our friends at Five Ultimate put together this list of great reads that can also sharpen your game. Once everyone decides on a book, set up a reading schedule and video chats to discuss. And yes, it’s totally fair to read Harry Potter again together.
Give Each Other a Little Boost — Sarahah is a site and iOS/Android app that lets you post anonymous messages for your friends. Have everyone on your team sign up and share their links, then go through and leave everyone a nice message telling them something you admire or appreciate about them. It’s totally anonymous, but you can leave your name if you’d like.
Start a D&D Group There’s a reason why Dungeons & Dragons has been the most popular role-playing game since the 70s — it’s fun! With everything going on right now, this feels like the perfect time to get together with a group of friends and escape into a fantasy world for a few hours. With social distancing, you might not be able to gather around a table to play, but fortunately, there are some really amazing online options. Roll20 is a great way to play D&D together online, either building your own campaign from scratch or using one of their ready-to-play campaigns. Set up a video chat using FaceTime, Skype, or Google Hangouts and get ready to party with rangers and warlocks.
Start Planning for Next Season — It’s a very rough and uncertain time right now, and many of us are mourning our interrupted seasons. Though things can seem pretty grim at the present moment, it’s more important now than ever to keep looking ahead. There will be a light at the end of all this. Sports will come back. Leagues will start up again. Tournaments will be rescheduled. And when they do, it’ll be such an incredibly celebratory moment. The start of next season will likely be the biggest, most exciting start to any season ever. And it’s totally okay to start getting hyped about it now! Skype with your teammates and discuss game strategy and ways to kick more ass than ever next season. Brainstorm ways to introduce new people to your sport and get them excited and involved. Start designing those new uniforms you’ve been talking about for ages. Come up with some cool fundraising ideas. Plan the most epic first-game after-party ever. Because we will all play again. And together, we’ll come back stronger and better than ever.
Photo by Bruno Gomiero for UnsplashContinue reading
In the four years I’ve been attending the High Tide Ultimate Tournament as a Savage employee, I’ve seen a lot of crazy things happen — but 2020 is the year I know I’ll always remember. The spread of COVID-19 ended this year’s tournament two weeks early, and most of us also recognized it could mean the end of the college season as well. For many seniors, it was a heartbreaking moment.
There was a distinct shift at the tournament among players and staff as we all began to process what was about to happen. There was a deep feeling of mourning as news spread that not only was the tournament ending, but schools were closing their doors for the foreseeable future, effectively ending the college Ultimate season.
It’s natural for players to obsess over what didn’t happen, or what could’ve been. I know I’ve struggled with this myself. For some players, it may be the last time they see some of their seniors for a long time. For some seniors, it’s the last time they’ll be playing with some of their teammates.
But this is what I keep thinking about, and why I’m grateful that I was at High Tide at this moment in time: Witnessing the love players have not only for each other, but also for their opponents at this event, has been life-changing. This truly is a special sport we play. From seeing teams treat a fun Spring Break tournament like it was their last Nationals run, to crying with new players on my old college team, High Tide 2020 was unforgettable.
It’s painful to think about, but we ought to stay positive, keeping this in mind: Our family of Ultimate players may just be one of the most tight-knit sports communities in the world. I — and the rest of the Savage team — love to come to Myrtle Beach not just to interact with you all and see you play some of the wackiest “games” of ultimate possible, but to be reminded of how much we love this sport ourselves.
Seniors, addressing you all directly for a moment, we want to offer our sympathy for the abrupt end to some of your seasons. While this is the end of one chapter, we can assure you there’s so much more in store for you. Look forward to joining new teams, new players to befriend, plays to make, and yes, more tears to be shed.
For now, make sure you leave your teams in a better state than you joined them. Leave a lasting impression for the younger crowd, and continue to be the leaders you wanted when you started playing. While the season’s ending early can lead to questioning of what might’ve been, it’s pointless to wonder about the unknown. Try not to mourn the fact that this chapter is over. It’s better to focus on the incredible times we had, celebrate the fact that you got to experience it, and that you have so much to look forward to.
It’s crucial during times like this that we hold our favorite people and memories close to give us comfort. We can and probably will feel sad thinking about it, but remember: This community doesn’t end with college. One of the things I love most about Ultimate is that it’s truly a year-round sport if you want it to be. With almost unlimited access to seasonal leagues, club tryouts, and even just casual pickup, Ultimate has never stopped growing — and this will not stop it.
Stay safe, stay healthy, stay Savage.
Written by Savage's Production/Order Rockstar, Nick Evans
Like the rest of the world, XII Brands and its companies — ARIA Discs, Five Ultimate, and Savage Apparel Co. — are closely monitoring the development of COVID-19 in the U.S. and abroad. The sports world is being deeply impacted by event cancellations worldwide, and our hearts go out to our fellow members of this global community as we navigate the weeks ahead. Our priority is always the health and safety of our employees and customers, and we are taking the situation very seriously.
We have been dealing with the effects of COVID-19 in China since the beginning of 2020, when the spread of the disease and resulting factory shut-downs began impacting our supply chain for Five Ultimate products. Unfortunately, this slowed down the production of some of our customers' orders, and we have been working toward remedying these issues. This has also sped up our transition to domestically produced fabrics and gear at XII Brands’ North American production houses.
At our production headquarters in Richmond, Virginia, we are closely following local, state, and federal guidelines for the health and safety of our workers. For non-production employees in Richmond and Seattle, we are encouraging remote working until further notice.
Many Savage, Five, and ARIA employees have spent the last two weeks on location in North Myrtle Beach for the High Tide Ultimate Tournament. On March 12, tournament director Ed Pulkinen announced that the remainder of the tournament will be cancelled in the interest of the players and the public health. In an effort to clear out our significant remaining stock of High Tide merchandise, Savage will be selling tournament gear at a discounted rate online for players who were unable to attend.
As major sports institution-partners, like USA Ultimate and the American Ultimate Disc League, continue to release announcements regarding cancellations and postponements, all of our brands are working with leaders of these groups to address their apparel needs for the future.
What does this mean for you?
As a loyal customer of any of the XII Brands, you can feel confident that we’re working diligently to ensure that gear is produced and delivered as expected. Because health and safety are top priorities at this important juncture, limited staffing and supply chain issues could impact our production processes in the future, however we are all being proactive about producing solutions, substitutions, and solving any unforeseen problems as quickly as possible.
Because colleges and universities are taking precautionary measures to ensure everyone’s health and safety, we recognize that shipping addresses and schedules may change, events may be delayed, or players may end up scattered to different geographies. Please be sure to email email@example.com with your order # and address as soon as you can so that your gear ends up in the right place at the right time.
Everyone at our production facility is being vigilant about washing their hands frequently, sanitizing working areas with disinfectant, and monitoring their health. Though we are doing our part, commerce and transit is a multi-step process. We encourage all of our customers to wash their hands and dispose of (recycle!) packaging immediately after receipt of any gear.
The entire sports world is being affected by COVID-19, but ARIA Discs, Five Ultimate, and Savage Apparel Co. will continue working hard as a team to ensure that you have what you need to be ready to hit the fields when it is safe to do so once again. Stay healthy, look out for each other, and don’t hesitate to reach out if we can help in any way.Continue reading