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Dodgeball Rules

The Court

  • The official dimensions for a regulation court are as follows:
  • The court is divided into two 30' X 30' areas, an attack line located parallel and 10' from the center line, for a total court length of 60' from endline to endline, and a total width of 30' from sideline to sideline.
  • Approximately 2'-3' should be allotted for an out of bound area, allowing officials to move freely along the sidelines.
  • The Queue for each team is located opposite of the official and starts at the center line for each team.



  • 6 regulation size balls should be used



  • Teams consist of six players . All players must be in uniform.
  • Leagues are co-ed
  • Minimum of 4 players needed to start a match.
  • No substitutions or non-registered Players are allowed unless they have registered under their city’s substitution registration



Substitutions must be made prior to the start of the game. No substitutions can be made during a game, except in cases of injury.



Retrievers are individuals designated to retrieve balls that go out of play. There will be 2 retrievers per team and will be players from a different team to eliminate cheating.

  • Retrievers may not enter the court at any time.
  • Retrievers are only allowed to field balls from their side of the court.



A regulation match consists of 5 games and will last 5 minutes each.


Ways to Win:

Elimination Game

A game played until all opponents on one side have been eliminated. The first team to eliminate all its opponents is declared the winner.


Timed Game

A game played until pre-determined time limit expires or all opponents are eliminated on one side. If time expires, all remaining players are counted. The team with most players remaining wins the game.


Beginning Play

Play begins with all players positioned behind their team's end line.


The Rush

  • The Rush occurs at the beginning of each game or reset.
  • Upon the official's signal, both teams rush to center court and attempt to retrieve as many balls as possible.
  • A team may rush with as many or as few players as it wants, but at least one person from each team has to Rush.
  • There is no limit to how many balls an individual player may retrieve.
  • Players may not slide or dive head first into the neutral zone or they will be called out.
  • Crossing over the neutral zone will result in an "out."
  • Players may not physically grab and pull another player across the neutral zone or prevent them from returning to their side of the court.


Putting a Ball in Play

The ball must go completely behind the attack line. During the Rush, any ball retrieved from the neutral zone must be returned behind the attack line before it may be thrown at an opponent. A ball that hasn't crossed the attack line is considered a dead ball, any hits or catches are voided plays.

There are several ways to put a ball into play following a Rush. 

  • A player carries the ball across the attack line.
  • A player passes the ball a teammate who is behind or carries it across the attack line.
  • A player rebounds the ball off the back wall of a closed court.
  • All balls retrieved from outside the playing area must be laid on the end line of the side in which it went out of bounds.


Time Outs

There are no team time outs



  • A player shall be deemed "out" when a live ball hits any part of the player's body, clothing, or uniform.
  • If a player is hit by a ball rebounding off another player or ball lying on the court that player is safe.  Once a thrown ball touches any surface, it will then be deemed a dead ball.
  • A defending player catches a live ball that was thrown
  • Players shall return from the Queue in the order they were put "out" (i.e. first "out," first "in").
  • If a ball is thrown and hits an opposing player then is caught by the opposing player's teammate - The ball is dead, the player hit is out, and the thrower is safe. 
  • If you are out, put your hands in the air as you leave the court. Exit the court at the nearest possible exit. 



  • Players can defend themselves by blocking the ball in flight with another ball but must retain control over the ball they are blocking with. A player dropping or losing possession of the blocking ball is deemed "out." 
  • Any blocked ball rebounding off another ball is considered dead. Any player hit by the rebounding ball is deemed "safe."



  • The act of intentionally delaying the game.
  • If a referee determines that a player or team is stalling, the referee will warn player or team. If the stalling continues, at the referee’s discretion, player or team will lose possession of all balls on their side.
  • If both teams are stalling a reset should occur
  • Balls cannot be rolled across the center line.  A ball must be thrown in the air across the centerline.  

Out of Bounds Rule

  • If any part of the player's body touches the end lines or far neutral zone line, the player shall be deemed "out".
  • Momentum may carry a player out of bounds while making a catch. Providing control of the ball was established prior going out of bounds.


Sacrifice Fly

An airborne attack, where an attacking player may legally cross the neutral zone to hit an opponent but the ball must leave the attacker's hand before any part of the attacker's body touches the opponent's territory. Once the thrower lands out of their territory they are out. 



  • A headshot occurs when a player is hit directly in the head by a thrown ball. 
  • If a player is hit in the head while standing up straight, the thrower is out. 
  • If a player is ducking or crouching and is hit in the head, neither the player hit or the thrower are out. 
  • Headshots are NOT allowed. No matter if the player is standing or crouching, headshots are not allowed. A player hit in the head by a high thrown ball will be deemed "safe", and any thrower committing a headshot will be deemed "out." A player raising their hands/arms to defend themselves from a headshot will not be called "out" if the ball hits their hands/arms above shoulder height in the act of defending themselves; and the thrower will be called "safe".
  • A player unsuccessful in their attempt to catch a high thrown ball will be deemed "out". It is the official's judgment as to whether the player is defending themselves or attempting to catch the ball.


Returning to the Game

  • A player may return to the game from the queue once a live ball is caught by a teammate. The player returning must be the next one in queue e.g. first out first in.
  • The team may have no more than the starting number of players return to the game. E.g. if a team catches a ball with all of their players in the game already, a 7th player may not join the game.

Sudden Death

  • If two teams are tied when the 5 minute timer runs out, the game will move into a sudden death round.
  • Each team starts with only two players and the first team to get one opponent out wins that game.
  • If the teams were tied with 1 player each when the game ended they will each add the next player in their queue. 
  • If each team had more than three players, those teams get to choose which two players of the three remaining will participate in the sudden death. 


  • Teams will use the honor system in terms of calling outs and headshots.  If there is a disagreement, the referee will make the decision.  Any decision by the referee will be final.