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How to Play Innertube Water Polo

General

Essentially, we're all just here to have fun so play clean, show good sportsmanship and be friendly! If you've never played in one of our leagues before, you should know that we're similar to 'Who's Line is it Anyway?': The points don't really matter and the rules are made up!

This game is basically soccer, but with your hands... and in a pool... and on innertubes.


Prescriptive Eye Wear

This is a splashy game. If you play with your contacts in, you will lose them unless you are wearing additional splash protection, such as goggles.


Pool

The pool is 21 feet wide by 75 feet long with pleasantly warm water. One end is deeper than the other, and one corner has a stairway leading into the pool. Since each end is different, teams will switch sides at the half. Cones are set up to delineate boundaries in the pool. The centerline is in the center (obviously), the women's boundary is 3 yards from the back and the men's boundary is 6 yards from the back.


Equipment

We provide high-quality tubes specifically designed for innertube water polo (seriously). One team will use the blue tubes and the other will use the yellow tubes. We play with a water polo ball that is easy to handle with wet hands. 


Teams

Teams will be comprised of 6 players with a minimum of 2 ladies in the pool from each team. Each roster can have up to two subs (this game isn't as physically demanding as it sounds, so keep your additional players to a minimum)


Boundaries

An offensive player may not pass their opponent's gender specific boundary. One cannot shoot the ball from behind the centerline or from beyond their gender specific boundary. Thus, the shooting area is between the centerline and the gender specific boundary. Any shots from outside this area will not count. 

When a ball is thrown or deflected out of the side of the pool, it will be given to a person from the opposing team near where it left the pool. 

When an offensive player throws the ball beyond the back of the pool, it will be given to the goalie. The goalie cannot throw the ball past the centerline.

When a defensive player deflects the ball before it leaves the back of the pool, it will be given to a player from the other team near the centerline.

Often, the ball will hit a wall and bounce back into the pool. This does not mean 'play on'. Give the ball to the offical so it can be given to the appropriate player. 


Substitutions

Substitutions can be made at any point during the game. However, the sub must get into the tube in the same spot the other person got out. That is, one cannot grab the tube and walk to the other side of the pool before they get in. Subs can watch the game from the adjacent jacuzzi, so it may be hard to convince anyone to sub in...


How To Sit In The Tubes

Guys must be on the tube. Neither their arms or legs can be through the tube hole. They can either sit with their but in the hole or lay with their belly over the hole.

Ladies have the option to be on the tube similar to a guy, or in it. They can wear the tube around their torso so they can touch the floor. The only time a lady does not have the option of being in the tube is when they're playing goalie.


Offensive Play

At the beginning of the game, both teams must be behind their own Men's Boundary line. The ball will be thrown into the center of the pool. Once the ball leaves the official's hand, players may advance towards the ball.

One may not maintain possession of the ball for more than 5 seconds at a time. If the ball is not passed within 5 seconds, it must be left where it's at in the water to be picked up by a member of the opposing team. 

One cannot shoot the ball from behind the centerline or from beyond their gender specific boundary. Thus, the shooting area is between the centerline and the gender specific boundary. Any shots from outside this area will not count. 

One cannot touch the ball or another player if they are not properly seated in their tube.

A player may not throw the ball further than the centerline if they are behind their own Men's Boundary. 


Defensive Play

The ball can be blocked, intercepted, or smacked from a players hand.

A player (aside from the goalie) may not block a shot from behind their own gender boundary line.

One may propel themselves off of another player, but you cannot hold another player's tube or any part of their body.

Intentionally splashing a player in the face is not permitted. This game is splashy enough as it is.

One cannot flip another player's tube. It's hard enough to stay on the tube as it is. 


Goalies

Goalies must sit in their tubes so that the tube lies flat on the water. 

Goalies are not allowed to throw the ball further than the centerline. 


Penalties

Penalties will be denoted by one short whistle blast. When you hear this, stop what you're doing and give the ball to the official.

Penalty shots will be taken from the appropriate gender boundary line. The following penalties will result in a penalty shot:

  • Intentionally splashing an opposing player in the face
  • Flipping an opposing player's tube
  • Goalies not properly seated in their tube during a shot.


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