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Throw! Catch! Run!
A sport with the name of the "greatest" one
Welcome to the world of Ultimate!

Mr. Ryota Nishinaka
Mr. Katsuhide Hori
Mr. Masahito Inoue

Mr. Ryota Nishinaka

Showing white teeth against suntanned faces, the three players grin, saying, "The best thing about ultimate is that we can totally exercise our bodies." The sport began in the US in the 1960s, and is like a combination of basketball and American football, using a flying disk. Players jump and run to catch the disk without dropping it on the ground. "The movement of the disk cannot be matched without fully utilizing each and every motor ability," said Nishinaka. That is why the sport is called "ultimate."

Mr. Katsuhide Hori

Nishinaka spent time abroad in junior and senior high school and he didn't have a chance to take part in club activities. "That is why I wanted to do sports that would give me a sense of accomplishment," he says. Hori explains with a smile: "I used to play soccer, but as my muscles were not strong enough, I wasn't able to be fully competitive. So I was searching for a sport where I could take advantage of my capability to run fast, and I ended up playing ultimate. "I didn't know him (pointing to Nishinaka) but while visiting different clubs, I got to know him. When I went to see the ultimate team, on his invitation, I thought, "'this is it!'" On the other hand, Inoue has played the sport since junior high school. "I played basketball, but I prefer playing with all my strength and without being restricted to playing on a court where my body movement is limited because of the floor," said Inoue. "This is why I stuck with the sport."

Mr. Masahito Inoue

Waseda has many different types of students, and of course the values of these students differ. "That's why I feel I have changed a lot," said Nishinaka. "I was not the type of person to be actively associated with others, but since entering Waseda, I cannot help getting involved with others (laughing). I have also started to feel it is enjoyable to be friendly with other people," agrees Hori, nodding. "I am not hesitant about unfamiliar things anymore (laughing)." Watching them talking, Inoue adds, smiling, "I am really happy to have so many good seniors."

In college championships, sometimes they cannot be equal to students of physical education colleges, but their attitudes have changed since being selected for Team Japan of WFDF (World Flying Disk Federation) U23 Ultimate Championships. They have developed the confidence to beat top players and understand their own weaknesses. However, the result was second place in the championships. Canada won by one point. "We aimed for gold, but we have no regrets," said Nishinaka. Inoue participated in the WFDF World Junior Ultimate Championships for under 19 players, but the team placed 13 among the 18 participating teams, facing many challenges to overcome. "It is not possible to be victorious by imitating the winning team," he notes with a new sense of determination. "All we can do is become players who can take advantage of our experiences." Hori nods, "Still, I was glad to achieve my dream of becoming a member of Team Japan. I really felt once again the importance of having high goals.

As athletes representing Waseda, they run and shout more than anyone else. With determination and aspiration, they train hard everyday.

Reference

Waseda Univ. Ultimate Team Sonics website
Official website of WFDF U23 Ultimate Championships

(Offered by WASEDA WEEKLY)

Mr. Ryota Nishinaka

Born in Osaka in 1988. 3rd year student at School of Political Science and Economics. Member of Hideko Magara's seminar. Graduated from Edogawa Gakuen Toride High School. Captain of Waseda Univ. Ultimate Team Sonics. Represented Japan at the WFDF U23 Ultimate Championships that took place in Florence, Italy, in July 2010. He is a ramen noodle buff. He says, "I eat more than 150 bowls of ramen a year."

Mr. Katsuhide Hori

Born in Chiba Prefecture in 1989. 3rd year student at School of Commerce. Member of Hiroshi Otsuki's seminar. Graduated from Tochigi Prefectural High School. Sub-captain of Waseda Univ. Ultimate Team Sonics. With Ryota Nishinaka, represented Japan in the WFDF U23 Ultimate Championships. Loves sweets, especially very thin Pocky.

Mr. Masahito Inoue

Born in Tokyo in 1991. 1st year student at School of Sport Science. Graduated from Kinjo Gakuen High School. Represented Japan at the WFDF World Junior Ultimate Championships 2010 held in Heilbronn, Germany, in July 2010. He loves Japanese sweets, saying, "I love raw Yatsuhashi cinnamon-seasoned cracknel with coarse sweet red-bean paste."