Circle rules football

Circle rules football, commonly referred to as circle rules, is a sport played between two teams of six with a large spherical ball similar to a stability ball. Invented in New York City in 2006,[1] the sport is currently played in cities across the United States, as well as in several international locations.[2][3]

The game is played on a circular field with a central goal. The goal has no net, as the two teams score through the goal from opposing directions. Around the goal is a circular area called the “key,” which only the teams’ goalies may enter. Players outside the key may touch the ball with any part of their bodies, allowing them to dribble, kick, roll, carry, and throw the ball; however, they may not hold the ball in any way that restricts its movement. The team that scores the most goals by the end of the match wins.

Circle rules football
Circle rules football 6-20-12
A game of circle rules football
Highest governing bodyCircle Rules Federation
NicknamesCircle rules, CRF
First played2006, New York, New York
Team members6
Mixed genderCoed
TypeTeam sport, ball sport


Each team consists of six players (excluding substitutes), one of whom is the goalkeeper. Teams may be coed, though they are not required to be. Two referees are on the field at all times; one watches over the key to call key violations and ensure the safety of the goalies, while the other moves freely around the field.

An official game consists of four fifteen-minute periods. Prior to the start of the game, a representative from each team participates in a "down-up." The two players stand opposite each other; on the referee's signal, they race to touch both shoulder blades to the ground and return to a stationary standing position. As in a coin toss, the winner of the down-up gets to choose which direction his team will score and whether his team will kick off or receive the ball at the start of the match.

The team that is kicking off gathers inside the key, while the other team takes up their positions outside. After the kick off, the kicking team must wait inside the key until a member of the other team has touched the ball; at this point the kicking team is released from the key, and no players except the goalies may reenter it until a goal has been scored. After each goal, the scoring team gathers inside the key and repeats this procedure.

Goals are scored by putting the ball through the goalposts in a team's designated direction. Each goal is worth one point. Outside the key, players may touch the ball with any part of their body; however, they cannot hold the ball with two hands or hold it against their body in a way that restricts the ball's movement. Players are free to dribble, kick, roll, carry, throw, and strike the ball, and they may move it in any direction around the field.

Physical contact between players on the field is limited. Incidental contact, as well as contact that is the result of a movement that causes contact with the ball before contact with another player, is generally not penalized. The referees' discretion plays a large role in determining the type and intensity of contact that is allowed on the field.

Inside the key, the goalies attempt to defend their own side of the goal, while allowing their team to score through from the opposite direction. Goalies have full contact with each other, allowing them to grapple; however, dangerous moves such as striking and contact above the neck are forbidden. Goalies may leave the key to pursue the ball, but they may not have contact with each other outside the key. Goalies may not score for their own teams.

The team with the most goals at the end of the match wins. In the event of a tie, two five-minute halves of overtime are played.

Field and equipment

The game is generally played on a circular field of grass or artificial turf, though it can also be played on other surfaces, including pavement and sand. The field is 50 meters in diameter. The goal (four meters wide and three meters high) sits in the center of the field, surrounded by a circular area called the key (8 meters in diameter).

The goalposts are typically constructed of 3/4 inch PVC piping, a common material found in most hardware stores.

The spherical ball (55 cm in diameter), made of a soft elastic, closely resembles a stability ball.


The most common penalties are known as "key violations." Any non-goalkeeper who sets foot inside the key (at any time other than kickoff) receives a 30-second suspension from the game without a replacement. If a non-goalkeeper touches the ball while inside the key, the suspension is extended to 60 seconds. Any player who receives three key violations in one game will be suspended from the game for five minutes without a replacement.

Contact violations on the field are similar to soccer or basketball. Inadvertent violations result in a direct kick for the opposing team. Flagrant contact violations result in a 60-second ejection of the offending player and a direct kick. Malicious contact violations result in ejection from the game without replacement. Three violations within a game result in the player being ejected for the remainder of the game, however, they may be replaced after any ejection penalties if the final violation was not malicious.

A penalty may also be called on a player for holding the ball. The penalty for holding is an indirect free kick for the opposing team from the spot of the violation.


Circle rules football was created by Gregory Manley in 2006 as a senior thesis project for the Experimental Theater Wing, a division of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.[4][5] The project aimed to highlight the similarities between drama and athletics, demonstrating that “everything inherent in theater is inherent in sports.”[6]

The game has been played regularly in Brooklyn's Prospect Park since its inception. In the spring of 2009, Circle Rules Federation began running an official competitive league in Brooklyn.[7] The first championship title was won by The Flying Mordecais.

Also in 2009, circle rules football was featured in the Come Out & Play Festival, where it won the "Most Original Sport" and "Best in Festival" awards;[8] it was also featured at igfest 2009, where it was named "Best in Festival" and "Most Likely to be Played Again."[9]

Official league play resumed in Brooklyn in 2010, and The Flying Mordecais successfully defended their title. In both the 2011 and 2012 seasons, upstart team The Rebel Rousers went undefeated and claimed the championship.


In casual matches, a slightly pared down version of the game, known as "small rules," is often played. Small rules is played without goalies, and the width of the goal and the key are reduced to two and six meters, respectively. In this version of the game, players may enter the key, but they still may not touch the ball inside the area—unless their last point of contact with the ground was outside the key (as in the case of a jump or dive). Small rules is typically played with four members per team on the field at a time.

Since fall 2007, an event called the Harvest Tournament has been held annually. For this tournament, a unique 3-on-3 version of small rules is played. The sixth Harvest Tournament took place in Prospect Park on Saturday, October 20, 2012.

In March 2010, an indoor variation of circle rules football was introduced in London.[10]


  1. ^ Circle Rules Football: Experimental Theater Meets Sports
  2. ^ With Games They Invent, Artists Unleash the Athlete Within
  3. ^ Lunch NYC: From the Playground to the Park
  4. ^ Forget Pills, Take Pilates
  5. ^ The Wild Frontier of Sports: Circle Rules Football Archived 2009-04-15 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ With Games They Invent, Artists Unleash the Athlete Within
  7. ^ New version of football sweeps college campus Archived 2011-12-29 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Obscure to the Extreme
  9. ^ Circle Rules Football — The Road Ahead
  10. ^ Circle Rules Football - a whole new ball game

External links


Kī-o-rahi is a ball sport played in New Zealand with a small round ball called a 'kī'. It is a fast-paced game incorporating skills similar to rugby union, netball and touch. Two teams of seven players play on a circular field divided into zones, and score points by touching the 'pou' (boundary markers) and hitting a central 'tupu' or target. The game is played with varying rules (e.g. number of people, size of field, tag ripping rules etc.) depending on the geographic area it is played in. A process called Tatu, before the game, determines which rules the two teams will use.

In 2005 kī-o-rahi was chosen to represent New Zealand by global fast-food chain McDonald's as part of its 'Passport to Play' programme to teach physical play activities in 31,000 American schools.

The programme will give instruction in 15 ethnic games to seven million primary school children.The New Zealand kī-o-rahi representative organisation, Kī-o-Rahi Akotanga Iho, formed with men's and women's national teams, completed a 14 match tour of Europe in September and October 2010. The men's team included 22-test All Black veteran Wayne Shelford who led the team to a 57–10 test win against Kī-o-Rahi Dieppe Organisation, the French Kī-o-Rahi federation.

Shelford's kī-o-rahi test jersey made him the first kī-o-rahi/rugby double international for NZ. The women's team coached by Andrea Cameron (Head of PE at Tikipunga High School) also won by 33–0. These were the first historic test matches between NZ and France.

Prospect Park (Brooklyn)

Prospect Park is an urban park in Brooklyn, New York City. The park is situated between the neighborhoods of Park Slope, Prospect Heights, Prospect Lefferts Gardens, Flatbush, and Windsor Terrace, and is adjacent to the Brooklyn Museum, Grand Army Plaza, and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. With an area of 526 acres (213 ha), Prospect Park is the second largest public park in Brooklyn, behind Marine Park.

First proposed in legislation passed in 1859, Prospect Park opened in 1867 after various changes to its design. It was planned by Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux, who also helped design Manhattan's Central Park. The park subsequently underwent numerous modifications and expansions to its facilities. Several additions to the park were completed in the 1890s, in the City Beautiful architectural movement. In the early 20th century, New York City parks commissioner Robert Moses started a program to clean up Prospect Park. A period of decline in the late 20th century spurred the creation of the Prospect Park Alliance, which refurbished many parts of the park starting in the late 1980s.

Main attractions of the park include the 90-acre (36 ha) Long Meadow; the Picnic House; Litchfield Villa; Prospect Park Zoo; the Boathouse; Brooklyn's only lake, covering 60 acres (24 ha); and the Prospect Park Bandshell that hosts free outdoor concerts in the summertime. The park also has sports facilities, including the Prospect Park Tennis Center, basketball courts, baseball fields, soccer fields, and the New York Pétanque Club in the Parade Ground. There is also a private Society of Friends cemetery on Quaker Hill near the ball fields. In addition, Prospect Park is part of the Brooklyn-Queens Greenway, a network of green spaces that stretch across western Long Island.

Prospect Park was made a New York City Historic Landmark on November 25, 1975, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 17, 1980. Prospect Park is run and operated by the Prospect Park Alliance and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (NYC Parks).

Quidditch (sport)

Quidditch is a sport of two teams of seven players each mounted on broomsticks played on a hockey rink-sized pitch. It is based on a fictional game of the same name invented by author J. K. Rowling, which is featured in the Harry Potter series of novels and related media.[3] The game is also sometimes referred to as muggle quidditch to distinguish it from the fictional game, which involves magical elements such as flying broomsticks and enchanted balls. In the Harry Potter universe, a "muggle" is a person without the power to use magic.

The pitch is rectangular with rounded corners 55 meters (60 yards) by 33 meters (36 yards) with three hoops of varying heights at either end.[4] The sport was created in 2005 and is therefore still quite young. However, quidditch is played around the world and actively growing.[5] The ultimate goal is to have more points than the other team by the time the snitch, a tennis ball inside a long sock hanging from the shorts of an impartial official dressed in yellow, is caught. Rules of the sport are governed by the International Quidditch Association, or the IQA, and events are sanctioned by either the IQA or that nation's governing body.

To score points, chasers or keepers must get the quaffle, a slightly deflated volleyball, into one of three of the opposing hoops which scores the team 10 points.[6] To impede the quaffle from advancing down the pitch, chasers and keepers are able to tackle opposing chasers and keepers at the same time as beaters using their bludgers—dodgeballs—to take out opposing players. Once a player is hit by an opposing bludger, that player must dismount their broom, drop any ball being held, and return to and touch their hoops before being allowed back into play.[7] The game is ended once the snitch is caught by one of the seekers, awarding that team 30 points.[8]A team consists of minimum seven (maximum 21) players, of which six are always on the pitch, those being the three chasers, one keeper, and two beaters. Besides the seeker who is off-pitch, the six players are required to abide by the gender rule, which states that a team may have a maximum of four players who identify as the same gender, making quidditch one of the few sports that not only offers a co-ed environment but an open community to those who do not identify with the gender binary.[10] Matches or games often run about 30 to 40 minutes but tend to be subject to varying lengths of time due to the unpredictable nature of the snitch catch. If the score at the end of the match including the 30 point snitch catch is tied (such that the team that caught the snitch was 30 points behind the other), the game moves to overtime where the snitch is constrained to the pitch's dimensions and the game ends after five minutes or when the snitch is legally caught.

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