WHAT is a USA Ultimate Affiliate?

Affiliates are local, community-based, legally incorporated disc organizations that own and operate at least 2 ultimate programs or events per year for their local ultimate community and have committed to partner with USA Ultimate by sanctioning all of their programs and events in order to:

Grow their organizational capacity to provide more opportunities for people to play ultimate;
Operate high quality events and programs (leagues, tournaments, camps, clinics, practices/training, etc);
Support youth, serve local teams, and provide USA Ultimate branded programs and services; and
Network and collaborate with the larger national infrastructure of ultimate organizations around the U.S. 



WHO should apply to be a USA Ultimate Affiliate?

Ideal candidates are local disc organizations that have a strong desire to grow youth ultimate and to strengthen their local ultimate community by offering high quality ultimate programs, services, and benefits to their constituents.  

Legal incorporation should either be in place or be something that the organization is actively pursuing.


WHY affiliate with USA Ultimate?

Working together, there is the potential to build a strong national infrastructure for ultimate through a network of local communities that can engage new players & kids all over the country to try our awesome sport!  In addition to being a proud member of our larger ultimate community, check out the full list of Benefits & Services that Affiliates receive here.

It’s GREAT for local organizations! Through support of the national governing body, affiliates gain special access to all the benefits of a full-time headquarters staff along with the increased visibility, resources, opportunities, and national programs. USA Ultimate’s goal is to help you grow ultimate!
It’s a model with PROVEN SUCCESS! Mimicking the success of other sports by establishing a proven infrastructure model, wherein a network of organizations are working together with common goals, strategies, and mutual support, will allow ultimate to thrive all around the country as well as produce top athletes to represent the USA on the international stage.
It’s the FUTURE of the sport! Imagine local and regional staff working to grow the sport through a connected, national infrastructure as part of the same Olympic and ultimate family.  Imagine ultimate being offered on the menu for our youth at every school, YMCA, Boys & Girls Clubs, JCC, CYO, etc.  THAT is where we want to take ultimate, and we invite all to join us!


Purpose of the Affiliate program:

Advance ultimate across the nation by building a national infrastructure that unites and supports local ultimate organizations and reduces the "reinvention of the wheel" within each community.
Strengthen local organizations to succeed with healthy growth, prosperity and development.
Assist organizers in developing safe, fun, high-quality programs in their communities.
Grow youth ultimate and get more kids playing and loving the ultimate sport!
Model our organizational structure after other successful sport governing bodies and align ourselves with the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) ideals.


Benefits of Affiliation:

In addition to being a proud member of our larger ultimate community, check out the full list of Benefits & Services that Affiliates receive here.


HOW can an organization become an affiliate?

Just follow the steps in the Initial Application list here.

And for ongoing program participation, see the list of items in the Annual Compliance section on the Application page here.

  • Promote, recognize and award Spirit of the Game according to the USA Ultimate rating system.
  • Strive to be the primary support system for all leagues and teams in your area.
  • Serve as a true partner and supporter of USA Ultimate!



My organization already has insurance...

That's great!  Hopefully USA Ultimate can either provide less expensive coverage (just the cost of Affiliate-level memberships) or else higher quality coverage from an A-rated carrier with a history of paying on claims, including player accident secondary medical insurance.  Beyond that, the program's #1 goal is establishing a nationwide connected network that lends the ultimate sport a solid base for stability, growth, and collaboration, in a way that supports each organization to achieve its full potential!


Ultimate past...

1968 Ultimate is invented
1979 Ultimate Players Association is formed
1981 1st Women's Club Championship
1988 1st HS State Championship
1991 1st Master's Championship
1992 1st UPA salaried employee
  UPA has ~7,000 members
  There are not yet any youth-focused playing opportunities or programs.
1998 1st Mixed Championship
2001 1st time included in World Games 
  Ultimate communities are still mostly isolated, and teams often have to travel far to play other teams. There is just not much in terms of national infrastructure yet, and communities operate independently with no links to a larger network
2002 1st manager of youth development hired
  UPA has ~15,000 members, striving to grow ultimate in every town, community and corner of the U.S. 
  Primary message to the world is still that ultimate is not about throwing a frisbee to your dog!

Ultimate present...

2003 1st College Championship on CSTV
2010 UPA rebranded as USA Ultimate
2013 1st club championship broadcast on ESPN3.
2014 USA Ultimate leads the world in the development of ultimate and has the best teams representing us in international competition. Everything we have worked towards helps us to become a recognized member of the US Olympic Committee
Today USAU has nearly 60,000 members, and about 4 million people play ultimate in the U.S.  College and club events are broadcast live on linear ESPN cable networks, in addition to online digital channels.
  Most athletic directors, broadcasters, journalists, and the public throughout the US understand that ultimate is a real sport played by millions. 
  USAU has 19 full time & 1 part time staff at headquarters working day in and day out, in concert with local organizers, to advance ultimate around the U.S.
  Ultimate has come a long way, now being offered in more schools, colleges, and communities than ever before, but there is still much more we can do.
  USA Ultimate develops the sport, rules, competitive structure, visibility, marketing, outreach, education and key relationships that help advance the sport. Affiliate organizations deliver these benefits and more directly to players, teams, schools and community groups.

Ultimate future...

USA Ultimate and all local organizations work in partnership to keep advancing the sport together to higher levels and achieving more than by functioning independently.
There are State-Based Organizations and local Affiliates with dedicated, paid staff throughout the US. Ultimate is offered in every school and local community as a great sport for all ages!
Ultimate becomes as recognizable, accepted, and widespread as other popular team sports like basketball, football, soccer, hockey, lacrosse and rugby!



LEARN MORE about the Affiliate program

See the various links at the top of this page to Affiliate program details & resources.  At any time, feel free to contact the Affiliate program staff at USAU HQ by email <affiliate@usaultimate.org> or phone: 719-219-8322.