A ‘Frisbee’, ‘flying disc’ or ‘disc’, is an invention shaped like a disc, primarily used to entertain, but it is also used as the main piece of equipment in the ‘ultimate’ disc field sport. Frisbees are thrown by a flick action of the wrist and are often thrown casually to and from people in a group. They are kept airborne by creating lift through the spinning caused by a throw, combined with the shape of the disc. The typical diameter of Frisbees or flying discs ranges from 20 to 25 centimetres (8 to 10 inches), however they are available in smaller and larger sizes.
The name ‘Frisbee’ is said to have originated from the Frisbie Pie Company’s metal pie tins that were used by university students as flying discs, and it is a trademark name owned by Wham-O, an American toy company, who bought the rights to the invention in 1957.The first Frisbee discs were metal food tin lids and cake pans used by American Walter Frederick Morrison and his would-be wife Lu in the 1930s, which they eventually sold to passers-by for 25 cents, making a 20 cent profit. Rred Morrison, as he was commonly known, developed his disc idea when he became a pilot during World War II and suffered a period of imprisonment, and he finalised and commercialised his plastic invention in 1948 with Warren Franscioni, and called it a ‘Flyin-Saucer’.
The modern Frisbee stems from a redesign made in 1955 by Fred Morrison, which was later improved by Edward Headrick in 1964 to make the disc more accurate and stable when thrown. The Frisbee was used in a sporting game in the late 1960s by students at Columbia High School in Maplewood, in the United States, which developed into the sport now known as ‘ultimate’.
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