Ultimate is a non-contact, self-refereed team sport played with a flying disc (or Frisbee™). Two teams of seven players compete on a playing field, roughly the same length as a football field but narrower. At each end of the playing field there is an end zone and each team defends one endzone. A team scores a goal if one of their players catches the disc in the opposite end zone. An incomplete pass or an interception results in a turnover and the defensive team becomes the offensive team. Ultimate can also be played on a smaller field as a 5-on-5 (or 4-on-4) game for indoor or outdoor turf fields.
Ultimate in 10 Simple Rules. To learn even more check out our the rules for Ultimate.
- The Field: A rectangular shape with endzones at each end. A regulation 7 on 7 field is 70 yards by 40 yards, with endzones 25 yards deep (Due to field restrictions, our fields aren’t always regulation size, but Captain’s should mark as close as possible).
- Initiate Play: Each point begins with both teams lining up on the front of their respective endzone line. The defense throws (“pulls”) the disc to the offense. A regulation game has seven players per team.
- Scoring: Each time the offense completes a pass in the defense’s endzone, the offense scores a point. Play is initiated after each score.
- Movement of the Disc: The disc may be advanced in any direction by completing a pass to a teammate. Players may not run with the disc. The person with the disc (“thrower”) has ten seconds to throw the disc. The defender guarding the thrower (“marker”) counts out the stall count.
- Change of Possession: When a pass in not completed (e.g. out of bounds, drop, block, interception), the defense immediately takes possession of the disc and becomes the offense.
- Substitutions: Can occur after a score and during an injury timeout. In leagues using speed point, substitutions happen on the fly.
- Non-contact: No physical contact is allowed between players. Picks and screens are also prohibited.
- Fouls: When a player initiates contact on another player or in other situations as outlined in the UPA rules, a foul occurs. When a foul disrupts possession, the play resumes as if the possession was retained. If the player committing the foul disagrees with the foul call, they can contest the play.
- Self-Refereeing: Players are responsible for their own foul and line calls. Players on the field resolve their own disputes.
- Spirit of the Game: Ultimate stresses sportsmanship and fair play. Competitive play is encouraged, but never at the expense of respect between players, adherence to the rules, and the basic joy of play.