Beach rugby game rules

Beach rugby game rules

On this page, we briefly explain the rules of beach rugby. An extended version of the rules can be found on the World Rugby website.

The Beach Rugby Laws are subject to the Official World Rugby Laws for 15 and 7 Player Rugby Union, except in the following situations:

  • A team has 10 players: 7 players and 3 substitutes.
  • The field must be on loose sand, demarcated by a “10 centimetres wide” plastic ribbon of a contrasting colour.
  • The dimensions of the field are: 60 meters by 35 meters, the length includes the target area of 5 meters. The field has a target area with different score values. 5 points for a try in the central zone, 4 points for the 2 zones next to the center, and 3 points for the two outer zones.

Kick off

Kick-off/Start of the match. The kick-off is taken by the team named first (home) on the score sheet. The player who starts the game does this by taking a placekick in the middle of the field.

The kick-off for the second half is a place kick by the other team.

Kick-off after a score. The kick-off is taken by the team that allowed the score. A player does this by dropping the ball from his hands onto the foot and catching it again (“tap-and-go”), after which he can attack or pass the ball.

The kick-off can be taken anywhere on the halfway line. The ball must be carried to the center line and not thrown. The players of the other team must keep a minimum distance of 5 meters from the center line. If this distance is not respected, the referee will give a penalty of 5 meters. If this happens repeatedly 5 meters from the goal line, the referee may award a penalty try in the center of the goal area.


Other than the use of feet in scrums and rucks, kicking is not allowed in open play. It is not allowed to:

  • kick for territorial advantage;
  • come into contact;
  • kick from the hand;
  • (“Point”) “fly-kick” the ball. The penalty is a free kick (“tap-and-go”) to the opposing team.

Due to the in-goal score difference, no conversions are awarded after a try.


The following type of scrum is used: A three-player scrum where the middle (hooker) player can hook the ball back. At the time the ball is introduced into the scrum, the opposing scrum half must remain behind the scrum off-side line, meaning behind the last feet of the scrum.


When a ball goes into touch, there will be a “tap-and-go” (free kick) 2 meters from the touchline taken by the team not in control of the ball when the ball goes into touch.

Score table

Try the center goal area: 5 points. Try in the area next to the center: 4 points. Try in the outer zones of the in-goal: 3 points. After a team concedes a try, the kick-off must take place within the next 15 seconds. If a team fails to do so, the referee can reverse the kick-off.


Due to the tiring nature of this sport, a substitution policy applies, just like with ice hockey; as much and whenever you want. The player must leave the playing field through the middle.
During the final, the player must receive a special substitution board from the player who enters the changing room outside the playing field. For more information, see the tournament

Playing time

The game is played in two periods of 6 minutes (=12 minutes).

At halftime, the teams immediately change ends and no rest is taken. If more than a minute is lost for medical or disciplinary reasons, this time will be added. A game will never exceed 15 minutes. An exception is the cup finals, which are played with two periods of 7 minutes.

Draw and Knockout Matches

If a match in the elimination phase (knockout) ends in a (scoreless) draw, the winning team will be the team with the most attempts scored by 5 points in the knockout match. Then the number of attempts scored in the 4 point area and the 3 point area respectively. If it is still tied, the match is decided by each team attempting one-on-one to score a try. The player carrying the ball starts on the center line, the defender starts on the goal line. If the attacking player’s body or knee touches the ground, it means they have not scored a try. For the finals only, these are taken in a best-of-3, if this does not yield a winner, the “sudden death” is taken by the same players as the series. All other knockout games will be “sudden death”. The actual point value of each attempt is not important

Points & Scoring

A regular goal is worth 1 point. A spectacular goal scores 2 points (as determined by the referee). A kite or pirouette also scores 2 points. When a goal is scored by a goalkeeper, this also scores 2 points. A 6-meter throw also yields 2 points.



Players who commit a violation must leave the field. The player may come back after a change of ball. A second lockout will disqualify the player.