Level Up: How to Cut in Ultimate Frisbee

In Ultimate Frisbee, a cutter is a player on the team that runs and changes directions quickly to try and get open from their defender. This is called cutting in Ultimate. In this level up article, you will learn how to cut in Ultimate Frisbee.

A cutter in Ultimate Frisbee is similar to a wide receiver in American football.

Ultimate cutting can be challenging, because there is a lot to think about, and a lot of running involved! A cutter has a lot of things on their mind – they need to make space for their teammates, and create space between themselves and their defender. This article will focus on creating space between you and your defender, by using the checkmark cut.

The Checkmark Cut

The most used, and most effective cut in Ultimate Frisbee is called the checkmark cut. 

The checkmark cut shows how to cut in Ultimate Frisbee.

It looks like a checkmark!

A cutter making a checkmark cut will generally do these three steps in order.

  1. Decide where you want to cut. Usually this means cutting deep towards the endzone, or under towards the handler.
  2. Make a fake. Take 3 hard steps in the opposite direction you decide to cut. This fake makes your defender think you are going to cut under, when you really want to cut deep.
  3. Cut back the direction you intend to. If done correctly, your defender will be off-balance, and you will have created enough space for the handler to throw you the disc.

Tips to Remember

  1. It’s important to start 10-20 yards from your handler. Too close, and there won’t be room to cut under. Too far away, and you might be too far away from the handler to throw to you.
  2. Think about your defender, before deciding where to cut. Are they shorter than you? If so, consider cutting deep. Are they standing deeper than you on the field? If so, consider cutting under.
  3. Think about your thrower. Do they like throwing deep, or throwing under? Sometimes it’s helpful to cut for your handler’s favorite throw.

Advanced Checkmark Cut

Once you’ve mastered the checkmark cut, there are advanced tactics you can try on step 2 of the checkmark cut.

Remember, you’ve already decided where you want to cut.

On step 2, you are making a fake. But instead of making a fake, you can:

  • Make a double fake. Double fakes need to be lightning fast, otherwise the handler will run out of time to throw. A double fake is usually 1 step in the direction you intend to cut, 3 steps faking the other way, and then cutting back in the direction you intend to cut.
  • Don’t make a fake. Take off running blazing fast in the direction you intend to cut, leaving your defender flat footed.

Advanced checkmark cut tactics leaves your defender guessing. If you started the game doing the checkmark cut several times, your defender might catch on to your cutting style. 

Switching it up, by not faking, or doing a fast double fake, can make them loose their balance, opening you up for an easy pass.

Mastering the checkmark cut is one of the best ways to learn how to cut in Ultimate Frisbee.

Level Up at Ultimate Cutting

You can check out a short video about how to cut in Ultimate Frisbee in the video below.

You can level up your Ultimate game with other Level Up articles below.