The Rules Of Rugby
Learn about the rules of rugby and how the game is played.
Rugby originated out of an intramural soccer game played at Rugby School in Rugby, England in 1823. By 1871 there were so many people playing they decided to put together the first rules for the game of rugby.
Rugby football is a fast moving game played by two teams of players. Each team tries to score by kicking, passing, or carrying the ball until they can kick it over the opponent’s goal, or touch it down behind the opponent’s goal line. The team that scores the most points wins the game.
There are two different versions of Rugby football. There is the Rugby Union, and there is the Rugby League. Rugby League sends teams all over the world to play on tour and the Union plays only in certain countries.
Rugby is divided into two halves (periods) and played for a total of 40 minutes each half. There is a rest period for no more than five minutes between halves.
The field is a maximum of 68 meters wide, and 122 meters long. The goal lines are 100 meters apart.
The ball is an air filled bladder covered with leather. The rugby league ball is 27 to 29 centimeters long and 58 to 61 centimeters around the center.
The officials include a referee and two touch judges. The referee controls the game and this official’s judging is final. They also decide if a kick at goal is successful. The team is made up of 15 players. There is one full back, 4 three quarter backs, 2 halfbacks, and 8 forwards.
A kickoff starts the game of rugby. A player place kicks the ball from the center spot on the halfway line. The receiving team stands on the ten-yard line. The team that gets the ball then tries to move it over to the opponents goal line by running with it, passing it, or kicking it to other team members. Players cannot pass the ball forward toward the opponent’s goal. It must be passed backward or sideways. When a player is tackled or downed he must release the ball giving it to the other team. When the ball goes out of bounds play is stopped temporarily. The player tosses the ball from out of bounds in between the two lines of forwards, called a line out. Each team then tries to pass the ball to their backs.
The scoring of the game is when a player touches the ball down in the opponent’s in-goal area. This counts for a total of four points. After one scores you go for a two-point conversion by kicking through two goal posts. There are two types of goals. The penalty goal and dropped goals each count for three points.
This game is over a hundred years old and it is filled with a lot of tradition and played with a lot of heart all over the world. Although it is a brutally rough sport it one of the most popular international sports today.