Dodgeball Rules & Regulations

Please ensure that you read and understand the Houston Sports & Social Club General Rules. They can be found here.

Houston Sports & Social Club Dodgeball Rules


There is no maximum number of players allowed on a dodgeball team roster; however players must be registered with Houston Sports & Social Club and must sign the Houston Sports & Social Club waiver to be able to participate. Please refer to the Houston Sports & Social Club General Rules for rules regarding roster adjustments and additional detail regarding waivers.


Please refer to the General Rules for details regarding player eligibility.


Houston Sports & Social Club expects all participants to play with the highest level of sportsmanship. Rude or demeaning behavior to umpires, the opposing team, and/or your own team members will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Unsportsmanlike behavior may result in that player being ejected from the game. An ejection may result in further suspension from participation in current and/or future Houston Sports & Social Club sports. An ejected player is required to leave the premises immediately. Refusal to leave the premises may result in a team forfeit and/or suspension.

Any disputes or complaints regarding the umpire’s handling of a game or ejection can be addressed with the league after the day of play in which the incident took place. On the day of the incident, the umpire’s decision will be considered final and disputes will not be addressed by the league.


If a team does not have the minimum number of players by game time, a $25 forfeit fine per match will be assessed and given to the opposing team in the form of a bar tab, unless the team has enough players to play an officiated exhibition game (minimum of 3 players). If a team e-mails by 8am the day of the game for weekday leagues or by 4pm Friday for weekend leagues, stating that they will not be able to field a team, no fine will be assessed. This will allow notifications to reach the opposing team’s members and will allow the opposing coach to inform his team of the impending forfeit.

Please refer to the General Rules for additional details regarding forfeit fines.


Houston Sports & Social Club promotes responsible drinking; however some facilities do not allow alcoholic beverages. If this is the case, Houston Sports & Social Club staff members will be monitoring to ensure that there are no visible signs of alcohol present. If a fine is assessed against Houston Sports & Social Club for a player’s negligence in following the rules of the field, that player will be responsible to reimburse Houston Sports & Social Club for any fines or additional costs associated with the violation. A player may be suspended for such violations.


The winning team will be awarded 2 points.

In the event of a tie, both teams will be awarded 1 point.

The losing team will not be awarded any points.


The playing boundaries are marked with sidelines, endlines, and a center line. All players must remain within the boundaries of the court. If any part of a player’s body touches out of bounds or crosses the center line, they will be considered out.


There will be a maximum of 8 players on the court at any time for a given team and a minimum of 6 players. There will be no more than 5 males on the court at any time. If a team does not have at least 3 females available to play, they must play short-handed. Players that arrive late must wait until the following game to enter the court. Substitutions can only be made at the beginning of a new game. In the case of a game stoppage for an injury, a substitution can be made during a game, however the substitute will be the first player that was knocked out of that game (males cannot substitute for females).


Each dodgeball match will consist of a best of 7 series (first team to win 4 games wins the match). There will be a 5 minute time limit on each game. If the game is not completed after 5 minutes, the team with the most number of players remaining wins the game. If the teams have an equal number of players after 5 minutes, the game will immediately go into overtime (described below).

Each game will have 4 balls in play (two 8-inch and two 7-inch balls). The two 8-inch balls will be placed on the center line half way between the center of the court and each sideline. Each team will receive one 7-inch ball in-hand. Players begin the game with one foot touching the back line on their end of the court. The official will blow their whistle to indicate the start of the game. Once the game is started, players can approach the center line to retrieve an 8” ball, however they are fair game to be hit by their opponent while trying to retrieve it.

If a player leaves the end line prior to the whistle being blown, a False Start will be called by the official. Players will be reset and one 8-inch ball from the center will be provided in-hand to the opposing team.

If the official rules that a player is holding the ball for the purpose of stalling, they will initiate a 5 second count. Once a 5 second count is initiated, any player holding a ball must release the ball within 5 seconds or roll the ball to the opposing team’s side of the court. If a player does not release or roll the ball back within the 5 second count, they will be considered out. If a player is holding 2 balls, they must release at least 1 ball prior to the completion of the 5 second count.


A player will be knocked out of the game under the following circumstances:

-       A player is hit with a ball that then proceeds to touch the ground (if a ball hits multiple players and then proceeds to touch the ground, all players contacted are out)

-       A player throws a ball that is caught by the opposing team prior to touching the ground. The player throwing the ball will be considered out. If the ball deflects off an opposing player and is caught by their teammate prior to contacting the ground, the player contacted will be saved and the player that threw the ball will be out.

-       Any part of a player’s body touches outside of the boundaries of play

-       A player attempting to deflect a throw with a ball in hand drops the ball which then contacts the ground.

-       A player throws a high velocity ball and contacts an opposing player directly in the head. In this case, the player throwing the ball will be considered out. (Note: If the player being contacted in the head is deemed to have made an unpredictable movement that the thrower could not have anticipated, e.g. diving, rolling, crouching, jumping, etc., that resulted in the player being contacted in the head, the throw will be considered legal).

-       A 5 second count is initiated by the official and a player holding a ball does not release or roll the ball to the opponent’s side within 5 seconds.

-       A player intentionally throws the ball out of the court in an effort to stall the game.

A knocked out player must immediately drop any balls in hand and exit the playing field with their hands raised over their head in a clear manner so that the opposing team knows they have already been knocked out. If knocked out player intentionally contacts a live ball before exiting the playing field, he/she will not be allowed to play in the next game.

If the ball hits the ground or a wall prior to contacting a player the ball is considered dead. If the ball hits the ground or wall and then contacts a player, the player is NOT considered out.

If a player deflects a thrown ball with a ball in-hand, the ball is considered dead. If the deflected ball contacts another player after being deflected off a ball in-hand, the player will NOT be considered out. Likewise, if the deflected ball is caught by another member of the team prior to contacting the ground, the thrower will NOT be considered out.


If a game ends with the same number of players on either side, the game will immediately go into overtime. 3 players from each team (with at least 1 female) will begin the overtime with one foot touching the endline. Each team will have one 7-inch and one 8-inch ball in hand to start the overtime.  The start of overtime will be signaled by the referee blowing their whistle. The first team to knockout a player on the opposing team wins the game. (Note: Only 1 player must be knocked out to win the game, not all 3).



Playoff seedings will be determined by the best overall records. In the event of ties, head-to-head matchups will determine higher seedings whenever possible. When head-to-head matchups cannot clearly determine a higher seed, tiebreakers will be determined in the following order:

1)    Head-to-head matchups

2)    Highest team game differentials for the season

3)    Strength of schedule

4)    Coin Flip