A MARAUDERS GUIDE TO

RUGBY

(COURTESY OF USA RUGBY)

15s: 

Two teams of 15 players  play for 80 minutes. Participants may only pass the ball backwards or sideways with no blocking allowed; using a variety of phases such as lineouts, mauls, rucks and scrums to retain possession during play. Rugby is unique in that play is continuous even after players are tackled on the field. Kicking is the only method by which both teams may move the ball forward.

7s: 

Two teams of 7 players play for 14 minutes. This fast-paced and high scoring version abides by the same rules as 15s.

basic rules

Players must advance the ball past their opponents’ side of the field (pitch) and touch it to the ground for a score worth 5 points (try).

 

After each try, worth 5 points, the scoring team is allowed an opportunity to kick the ball through the posts for an additional 2 points (conversion). Certain penalties also earn the non-offending team a kick through the posts, worth 3 points (penalty) if made.

scoring

POSITIONS

15s:

Forwards: (1) Prop - Tighthead, (2) Hooker, (3) Prop - Loosehead, (4) Lock, (5) Lock, (6) Flanker - Blindside, (7) Flanker - Openside, (8) 8-man

Backs: (9) Scrumhalf, (10) Flyhalf, (11) Wing - Left, (12) Center - Inside, (13) Center - Outside, (14) Wing - Right, (15) Fullback

7s:

Forwards: Prop - Tighthead, Hooker, Prop - Loosehead

Backs: Scrumhalf, Flyhalf, Center, Wing

In 1823, William Webb Ellis used his hands to pick up a ball in a soccer match and ran with it to the goal. That day, rugby was born. There are two primary forms of rugby union: rugby fifteens and rugby sevens. Touch rugby, beach rugby, rugby tens and rugby twelves are also iterations of the sport often used as a development pathway and feeder into the main forms. 

HISTORY

Though rugby players don’t wear pads or helmets, the techniques and rules of the sport make impact much safer. Rugby players are taught to use their arms and shoulders when making contact with opponents; earning serious repercussions for any contact above the shoulders and other dangerous styles of play. Players caught disregarding these rules receive a yellow card and are forced to sit on the bench for ten minutes in rugby fifteens and two minutes in rugby sevens. Serious offenses can result in a red card, with the chance of suspending the athlete for weeks.

SAFER WITHOUT PADS

TRY

The main objective of the game, to touch the ball down in the opponent’s in-goal area (tryzone) for a score worth five points. Unlike American football, the ball must be touched to the ground for the points to be awarded.

Terminology

TRYLINE

The goal line the separates the area where a try may be scored and the remaining field of play 

TRY ZONE

The in-goal area where tries are scored. 

PENALTY

A kick worth three points awarded to a non-offending team when their opposition commits a penalty. 

TOUCHLINE

 (similar to sideline)

 when the ball moves out of bounds or outside the field of play. 

CONVERSION

The in-goal area where tries are scored. 

RUCK

When the ball is on the ground and at least one player from each team closes around it while on their feet. The ball cannot be handled in the ruck, players must move it until it reaches a teammate’s hindmost foot and can be picked up. 

TACKLE

A tackle occurs when the ball carrier is brought to the ground and held by one or more opponents. A ball carrier must release the ball immediately following the tackle. Unlike American football, play does not stop when tackles are made. 

MAUL

When the ball carrier is held by one or more opponents and one or more of his or her teammates bind on as well. The ball must be off the ground, a minimum of three players must be involved. 

LINEOUT

A means of restarting play after the ball falls out of the field of play (touchline). Forwards assemble in a line on each side where one team’s hooker throws the ball straight in the middle. Each team lifts players up, retrieve the ball and resume play. Which team’s hooker throws the ball  is circumstantial. 

SCRUM

A means of restarting play. All forwards bind together and connect with opposing team's forwards. The ball is thrown into the tunnel by the non-offending team’s scrumhalf. Both hookers try and move the ball with their feet while pushing the other team backwards until the ball reaches the hindmost leg of one of their teammates.

SINBIN

when a player is removed from the game and forced to sit out for 10 minutes (rugby fifteens) or two minutes (rugby sevens) for dangerous play or serious infringements. 

The Pitch

Goal Post

Dead-Ball Line

In-Goal

Touchline

Half-way Line

Goal Line

RUGBY PITCH

Touchline