BEACH RUGBY RULE
Copyright 1990-2016 Beach Rugby Japan Tour. All rights reserved
【 The object of the game】
Beach Rugby consists of two teams of five players each playing within
the bounds of fair play and with sporting spirit. The object is of Beach Rugby is to run with and pass the ball, scoring as many points as possible. The team that has scored more points wins the game.
Article 1 – The Field
1. As shown in the picture below, the play zone is the region surrounded by the in-goal lines and the sidelines. However, it does not include the in goal line and the sidelines.
2. The “competition area” indicates the play zone and the in-goal zone. The “field” indicates the competition region as well as the necessary surrounding region.
3. The lines in the diagram below have to be clearly drawn on the field. However, the 2-meter line, the center line, and the player rotation zone do not have to be drawn.
4. The dead ball line is not included in the in-goal zone.
5. The game is played in the full extent of the region displayed below, and sand is preferable as the type of playing field.
Article 2 – The Ball
1. The ball is of an oval shape and should be as close to the diagram below as possible.
*The length is 260-290 mm.
*The vertical circumference is 680-700 mm.
*The horizontal circumference is 500-520 mm.
*The weight is 385-425 g.
2. The internal pressure of the ball, at the beginning of the game, is 0.6697-0.70301 at the sea’s surface.
3. Preparing a spare ball is permitted. However, the spare ball must not allow a team to receive advantage for anything.
Article 3 – The number of players
A game is conducted between two teams, each team with five players at most.
Players who may join in a given game are limited to the ten players who were qualified to play for that game.
-Players may be substituted from whenever the game is stopped until whenever it restarts, as required.
-Once the game is restarted, a new player may not participated nto the game until the next time-out, even if one of the teams consists of less than five players.
-Substitute players may only participate from the player rotation (Substitution player) zone of one’s own team.
Penalty of the above is called an “members over” violation.
4 When restarting the game, if there are more players inside the competition area than what is declared legal in the First Article of Chapter 3, such a situation is considered an “members over” violation.
* “members over” violation by the offensive team, then a turnover occurs at the point on the field at which the violation occurred.
*violation is by the defensive team, the game restarts 5 meters forward of the point on the field at which the violation occurred.
5. There may be certain cases where the above regulations will not be particularly enforced because the person committing the “member over” violation clearly has no intention to participate in the game (for example, the person is raising both hands) or he/she is in a part of the competition region but clearly not disturbing the game.
6 A player who has suspended on the game may no longer participate in that game.
Article 4 – Player Attire
1.Players may not wear necklaces, rings, glasses or other dangerous objects. With
regard to wearing sunglasses, glass lenses are prohibited, while sports
sunglasses are permitted. However, if the referee decides such sunglasses are not
to be worn before the game has started, players must abide by his/her
instructions. (Plastic lenses that fit one’s face are permitted.)
2.Players may wear shoes made of cloth, rubber, or plastic/synthetic resin, but
the bottom of those shoes may not be bumpy.
3. Even if the game has not started or is ongoing, the referee must warn any
players violating any of the abovementioned rules and must not allow such
players to participate in the game until their violating behavior is fixed.
4. In general, players must wear uniforms that display their team name and
their player numbers (number 1 to 10).
Article 5 Game begins (Starts) and duration of the game
1. Each game begins at the half-line with the offense calling set and play.
2. Before the game begins, both captains play a game of paper-scissor-rock
"JANKEN" in order to decide offense or defense (court side).
3. Each game lasts up to 20 minutes, which is dictated by the International Beach
Rugby Association (hereafter referred to as “association”).
4. A given game of any number of minutes (within 20 minutes) is divided into first
and second halves.
5. A game’s beginning and end are dictated by the referee’s whistle.
6. The referee decides whether or not to terminate or extend the game in the event
of a player (or players’) illness or injury.
7. The time for making “extra points” is included in the general timeframe of
8. If the winer of the game is not decided within time, then this is decided through
the match-point method (refer below).
9. For those games specifically decided by the Association (semi-final and beyond)
they may have extra minutes game (#minutes halves)
Match-point method: The two teams alternate in making an “extra point” play. The two sides keep competing this way until one side fails in scoring a point while the other side succeeds.
Article 6 - Referee and side referee
1.In an official Association game, a referee and side-referee are positioned. The
Association selects the referee or he/she is decided according to rules dictated
by the Association.
2. If the referee becomes unable to perform his/her duty during a game for which
he is responsible, then the side-referee becomes the referee. The side-referee is
decided by a method dictated by the Association.
3. The referee has full responsibility toward his/her game’s time and scoring. At
the same time, he/she must not change or abridge the rules of any games for
which he is responsible and must apply the rules equally.
4. The side-referee assists the refree and help judgements.
5. The referee must blow his/her whistle for the following instances: touch, scoring
a point, when the ball or a player gets out of bounds, when there is a penalty of
the rules, for the beginning and end of the game, and for beginning the “extra
6. No player can contest the judgments of the referee.
7. The referee can direct players to suspend the game according to the 19 articles.
Article 7- Game method
1. A game begins when the offensive team calls set, and players may do the
following at any time, within the boundaries of the game’s rules:
Capturing the ball and running with the ball
Passing the ball
Touching the player in possession of the ball
The offensive side has five downs; each down is lost when the player in possession of touched. When all five downs are exhausted, offense and defense are rotated.
2. Under no circumstances may any player kick the ball. If the referee judges that a
player has kicked the ball, then offense and defense are rotated at that point in
Article 8-Set Play
1. A set-play begins when a player on the offensive team (the snapper) passes the
ball through his/her legs to the player behind him/her (the receiver).
2. After being “touched,” the touched player is to become the snapper for the
next offensive play in a timely fashion. A delay under Article 19 (Unjust Plays) is
declared if this process is not completed in a timely fashion or if the snapper is
switched. However, if the touched player is injured and the referee judges that
he/she is unable to continue playing, then a rotation of the player is permitted.
3. When a snapper passes the ball to the receiver, the following is considered as a
*Rolling the ball as part of passing the ball or otherwise having the ball touch the ground while passing the ball.
-Ball-down penalty is proclaimed and a turnover occurs at the point on the field at
which the ball touches the ground.
*Directly handing the ball to the receiver
-A not-release penalty is proclaimed and a turnover occurs at the same
point on the field.
*The snapper snapping the ball without having both feet on the ground
-A foot-up penalty is declared and a turnover occurs at the same point on
*The receiver takes the ball at a point not on a straight line from the back of
-A not-straight penalty is occurred and a turnover occurs at the same point
on the field.
*The receiver takes the ball at a point that is not more than 1 meter on a
straight line from the back of the snapper.
-Not 1 meter penalty will be given, a turnover occurs at the point on the
field at which the set-play was made.
*The snapper makes a “dummy pass” (only pretends to pass the ball).
A dummy pass penalty is declared and a turnover occurs at the same
point on the field.
4. The snapper may begin the play if he/she is parallel to the sideline and behind
the original point.
5. When the snapper’s position is beyond the original point in the direction of
the opposing team’s goal line or his/her position is not parallel to the sideline,
then a point-over violation is declared and a turnover occurs at the original
6. Set play point shall never be 2 meters or below from the in-goal line.
7. If 5 seconds go by after set is called but no set-play is begun, then an over-time penalty is declared and a turnover occurs at that same point on the field.
Article 9 – Front pass
1. Within five offensive plays, the offensive team is allowed one front(Forward)
2. A Front pass is deemed as such if the pass’s motion occurs above the shoulder
from start to finish. No pass going in the backward direction is deemed a
3. With regard to front passes, in any part of the playing field: if a player on the
offensive team other than the player who completed the front pass lets the ball
touch the ground, or if the ball gets struck down or intercepted by the defensive
team, then the forward pass is deemed incomplete and a turnover occurs at the
Article 10 – “Touch”
1.“Touch” is when a player on the defensive team touches, from the shoulders
downward, the player in possession of the ball on the offensive team. For cases
where the player is touched above the shoulders or where the touch is deemed
dangerous, please refer to Article 18, “Dangerous Plays."
2. The referee judges the completion of a “touch”. When the referee judges that
a touch has occurred, he/she blows the whistle and indicates the location of the
touch and the next set-play.
3. If the offensive team gets touched inside its own goal zone, then turnover occurs
2 meters into the play zone from the goal zone.
4. A team on offense may be touched five times by the team on defense before a
5. If the person (the receiver) who receives the ball from the snapper is touched
before passing the ball to another player, then turnover occurs at the location at
which the touch was completed. (Receiver Touch apply)
6. If the ball is being passed and it is unclear who is in possession of the ball, then
the defensive team may place one hand on each of the two players on the
7. If the defensive team touches an offensive team player clearly after he/she has
already completed a pass and thereby obstructs the next play, then this is called
a "late touch” penalty. When this occurs, the offensive team may approach 5
meters gain from the location of the violation toward the goal line. The number
of touches also gets reset to the first touch.
8. If a player intercepts the ball and then gets touched, the next play after that is
considered the 2nd play.
Article 11 – “Scoring points”
The offensive team scores a point when its player steps into the goal zone of the defensive team. This is called a “Try.”
If the ball is being carried, it is considered a touch-in if the ball’s front end has reached the goal line. If a touch and a try occur simultaneously, then the try is deemed good.
If the front pass is occurred, then the receiving player must be inside the goal zone when taking possession of the ball for it to be deemed a try. The player receiving the ball must either have both feet inside the goal zone or one foot inside the goal zone and while the other foot or any other body part is clearly not touching somewhere outside the playing field. If the player catches the ball in the air, then his/her body must clearly be inside the goal zone for the try to count. However, if the player receives the ball while inside the goal zone but the ball itself has not reached the goal zone, then the try is no good.
As stated in Article 1, the dead ball lines and sidelines are themselves considered outside the playing field. The goal lines, however, are considered a part of the goal zones.
After a try is completed, the team that completed it is given a chance for an
extra point. In this situation, three offensive team players and two defensive team
players begin the extra point play at the point determined by drawing a line from
the try point to the centerline and parallel with the sidelines.
There is only one right of offense, for which only one front pass may be used.
The rules that govern scoring the extra point are the same as for a normal try.
An extra-point play begins at the referee’s whistle, and the offensive team must score a point within 15 seconds.
The offensive team may forfeit its right to score an extra point. To do so, the team must declare its forfeiture to the referee. After this, the game continues at the centerline, with the opposing team in possession of the ball.
3. Explosion point
This occurs when the defensive team intercepts the ball during the extra point
play of the offensive team.
The defensive team only has one chance for one front pass.
The time parameters are the remaining amount of time of the extra-point play after the interception has occurred.
*Attention: The referee will not blow his/her whistle to resume the
game after an extra-point play or an explosion-point play has
concluded. Instead, whichever team in possession of the ball resumes
the game at its discretion.
4. The number of points is as follows:
Try: 3 points
Extra point: 1 point
Explosion point: 2 points
5. Penalty Try
Deeming an incomplete play as a try – a referee may decide to award 3
points to the offensive team if he/she deems that it would have completed a
try, had a violation not been committed by the defensive team.
6. If the defensive team commits an offside violation during an extra-point play or
an explosion-point play, then the offensive team automatically receives those
Article 12 – advantage
If a penalty occurs during the game and the non-penalty occurred team may gain an advantage if the game is left unstopped, the referee may decide to leave the game to continue as advantage.
Article 13 – if the ball or a player touches the referee
If the ball or a player touches the referee inside the playing area, the play still keeps going. However, if the referee judges that the above was done intentionally by:
A player on the offensive team: an automatic turnover at the location of penalty
A player on the defensive team: the defensive team must go back 5 meters from the location of penalty point and the offensive team may begin attack again from Play 1. (Touch reset)
Article 14 – if the ball or a player touches off bounds
1. If one foot or two feet of the player in possession of the ball touches off bounds,
a turnover occurs.
*As put down in Article 1, the dead ball lines and sidelines are considered part of
the playing field.
2. If the ball touches the ground outside bounds, the team opposing the player in possession of the ball or the player who last touched the ball goes on the offense.
3. The following is the location to resume the game for each respective case:
* if the player or the ball goes beyond the sideline,
-the turnover occurs 2 meters into the playing field from the point at which the
off-bounds occurred, parallel to the goal line.
*If the player or the ball goes beyond the dead ball line of his/her own team,
- the turnover occurs 2 meters into the playing field.
Article 15 – Offside and the Offside Line
1. The offside line of the offensive team is based on the snapper’s location, is
parallel to the goal line, and is drawn perpendicular to the sidelines.
2. The offside line of the defensive team is 2 meters in the backward direction of
the offensive team’s offside line.
3. If the defensive side crosses the offside line before the snapper on the offensive
side releases the ball, the defensive side has committed an offside penalty.
In addition, if someone other than the snapper on the offensive side crosses the
offside line, he/she has committed an offside penalty.
4. With regard to an offensive offside, the point at which an offside violation has
been committed is the point at which a turnover must occur.
With regard to a defensive offside, the defensive side must retreat 5 meters, and
the offensive side may begin from Play 1. (Touch count reset)
Article 16 -Ball Down, Throw forward
1.Ball-down describes the following action:
The player drops the ball and it falls on the ground.
The ball hits the player’s hands or body and falls on the ground.
The player holding the ball falls down and the ball hits the ground.
The ball is passed but falls to the ground without touching any player.
2. If the player with the ball becomes ball-down in the direction of the other
side’s goal line, then turnover occurs at the last point at which the player was
holding the ball.
If the player with the ball becomes ball-down in the direction of his/her own goal
line, then turnover occurs at the point at which the ball hit the ground.
3. " Throw forward ” is when the player with the ball throws or passes the ball in
the direction of the other side’s goal line. However, if this is the front pass
given to the offensive side each turn, then it is not a “Throw forward.”
4. When a “Throw forward” occurs, it is the point at which the ball was thrown that the team against which the penalty was made goes on the offense. ***
Article 17 – Obstruction
1. If an offensive player willfully obstructs a defensive player trying to touch the
player in possession of the ball, whether or not the obstruction entails physically touching,
2. Physical touching other than that which is legitimately for the purpose of the
play (such as grabbing or shoving) is deemed as obstruction.
3. A defensive player, using his/her hands or feet, to hit or steal the ball while it is
in possession by an offensive player
4. If there is an obstruction by the offense, turnover occurs.
If there is an obstruction by the defense, the defense retreats 5 meters and the
offensive team begins again from Play 1.(Touch count reset)
However, with regard to front passes, if there is an obstruction against someone
who is trying to receive a pass, then:
If it is an offensive obstruction, the front pass is deemed unsuccessful and there is a turnover at the point at which the pass was thrown.
If it is a defensive obstruction, the front pass is deemed successful, and the game resumes at Play 1 for the offensive team.(Touch count Reset)
Article 18 – Dangerous plays
1. Touching someone harder than necessary, grabbing the player’s clothes while
tagging, or grabbing the player’s body (holding)
2. Touching the player with the ball at a point above his/her shoulders
3. The player with the ball purposefully hitting over the defensive player seeking
to touch him/her; as well as other forms of behavior deemed extremely
dangerous by the referee
4. When a dangerous play occurs, act according to Article 19, Unjust Plays.
Article 19 – Unjust plays
1.An unjust play is when a player commits an act of obstruction or misconduct,
a dangerous play, an unsportsmanlike act, an act of retribution, or the repetition
of the same violations.
2. Players on either side committing the following unjust plays will be punished
according to Provisions 3 and 4:
Repeatedly violating the rules of the game
Purposefully expending time for no apparent reason (delaying behavior)
Purposefully taking the ball out of the playing field
Acting in ways that harm sportsmanship
Making a play that fits the description of Article 18
3.If it is judged that a player’s action fits the previous Provisions, a yellow card is
given out. In this case, the team that has committed a penalty retreats to its own
goal line. The opposing team will be 2 meters away from the penalty team, at the
center of the line, and will begin from Play 1. (Touch count Reset)
4. If no improvement is observed, the referee can give out a red card and suspend
the penalty player from the game.
Article 20 – Suspend/Ejection of Players
1 .A list of suspended players must be submitted to the Association.
2. From those on the above list, the Association may decide that someone who has
shown extreme misconduct may not participate permanently in the games
designated by the Association. The Board of the Association makes this decision.
3. With regard to tournaments designated by the Association, the authorities of a
certain game may decide, along with the referees of that game, that an extreme
act of misconduct, which already caused the suspencion of a player in that game
under the 17th article, warrants the prohibition of that player’s participation in
all games after that game in the tournament.
Article 21 – Revisions
In order to revise these regulations, two-thirds of the Board of the Association must agree to submit a proposal to the General Assembly. Then, the proposal must gain a majority’s agreement to become an effective revision in the regulations.
After discussion and agreement between the relevant authorities and referees, these regulations may be revised for the duration of a designated game.
If there is some doubt about the regulations, relevant tournament authorities and referees together decide on matters for the duration of that tournament. If not during a tournament, the Board of the Association makes decisions for doubts about the regulations.