Ultimate Frisbee Rules

  1. Eligibility
    1. ID’s: All students, faculty, and staff must purchase a PEIF membership to be eligible to participate. You must show the Intramural Staff your NMU ID in order to participate. Community members are eligible to participate but must be 16 years of age, and must purchase a PEIF membership.
      1. Note: Students who are found to be participating without a current membership will be automatically charged the semester rate of $70.00 to their student account.
    2. Varsity Athletes: Varsity athletes may participate in intramural sports which are not sports that they represent at NMU. However, no more than three (3) varsity athletes will be allowed on the field at one time.
    3. League Rules: Ultimate Frisbee will be ran as an “Open” league. Teams are allowed to have any number of men and/or women on their roster.
    4. Club Sports: No more than half of a team may be members of a club team that participate in the corresponding intramural sport. A sport club member is defined as one who has practiced or played for the respective sport club during the current academic year and is officially registered with that club.
    5. Playoff Eligibility: Teams must average a 2.75 sportsmanship rating in order to qualify for the playoffs.
      1. Players must play in at least one regular season game in order to be eligible to play in the playoffs.
    6. Concussion: Any player who exhibits signs, symptoms, or behaviors consistent with a concussion shall be immediately removed from the game and shall not return to play until cleared by an appropriate healthcare professional.
    7. Blood Rule: Any player who starts to bleed will not be able to re-enter the game until the bleeding has stopped. If the player’s clothes have blood on them, the player must change clothing in order to re-enter the game.
  2. Equipment
    1. Shirts and close-toed shoes are required.
    2. NO cleats are allowed. Multi-purpose shoes are recommended. Basketball, tennis, and turf shoes are permitted. 
    3. Frisbees and pinnies shall be provided. The game disc will not be used for warm-ups.
    4. Billed hats, metal bracelets, necklaces, rings, earrings, or watches are not allowed. Jewelry may be taped in the case that the jewelry cannot be removed.
    5. No padding or protective equipment may be worn; i.e. hip pads, headgear, casts, etc.
    6. Players may wear a face shield molded to the face with no protrusions to protect against a facial injury.
    7. Mouthpieces are not required, but are highly recommended.
    8. Any player who must wear a necessary metal brace must cover all metal parts of the brace before playing.
      1. Note: NMU Rec Sports staff reserves the right to allow/disallow any piece of equipment in which they deem unsafe towards the participants.
  3. Playing Area
    1. Games will be played at the Superior Dome.
  4. General Guidelines
    1. Please arrive 10-15 minutes before your scheduled game to sign in.
    2. Each player must provide their valid NMU ID to the scorekeeper/supervisor and sign in next to their name.
    3. All players must be on the roster. No write in names are allowed.
    4. If a team is unable to provide the minimum amount of players allowed (4) at their scheduled game time, they will be given 10 minutes to arrive after the clock begins.
  5. Captains Responsibilities
    1. The captain is responsible for passing rule information on to their team.
    2. All players must be on the official roster on IMLeagues.com.
    3. Late arrivals must sign in before they can play.
    4. Players must play in at least one regular season game to be eligible for tournament play.
    5. Captains are held responsible for their team and fan control.
    6. Discussion with officials may only take place between the designated team captain and the officials. These discussions must be made in an appropriate manner.
  6. Forfeits
    1. Teams are expected to begin on time. A team has 10 minutes to arrive after the clock begins. When a team is late, the team that was on-time will be awarded 2 points. The on-time team will get an additional 2 points every five minutes the opposing team is late until a forfeit occurs. If a team is more than 10 minutes late, a forfeit will be declared and a $25.00 fee will be charged to the captain’s student account. Certain circumstances may apply.
    2. Teams that forfeit during the season may not be eligible for tournament play.
    3. Teams who forfeit twice during the regular season will be dropped from further competition and will be charged a total of $50.00.
    4. Teams that are unable to attend their scheduled game time must contact the Intramural Sports Manager by emailing Chrsmith@nmu.edu or calling 906-227-1561 at least 48 hours prior to your game time in order to avoid the forfeit fee. Make sure to leave your team name, game time, and league.
  7. Tobacco/Alcohol Policy
    1. Alcoholic beverages, tobacco, and/or drugs are not permitted on or around the playing area. Contests will not be played and will be forfeited if alcohol, tobacco, and/or drugs are present. Any NMU Rec Sports employee reserves the right to remove participants and/or forfeit games if substance abuse occurs.
    2. A player that is removed for substance abuse will be indefinitely suspended, pending a meeting with the Intramural Sports Manager.


  1. Game Play
    1. Teams shall consist of six (6) players.
      1. Teams can play with a minimum of four (4) players.


  1. Length of game:
    1. Two (2) twenty (20) minute halves shall constitute a game. Time will be continuous for each half, except during time-outs, injuries, and unusual delays.
    2. There will be a five (5) minute halftime.
    3. Each team will be permitted two time-outs per half, each lasting two (2) minutes.
      1. Unused time-outs may not be carried over.
      2. A time out can only be called after a goal and before the ensuing throw-off.
      3. The only player that can call a timeout must have possession of the disc.
    4. There will be no overtime in regular season play. Games will end in a tie.
    5. If overtime occurs in postseason play, a five (5) minute overtime period will occur until a winner is decided. The team that takes a two (2) point advantage in overtime will be declared a winner. If a two (2) point advantage is never reached, the first team to 25 goals will be declared the winner.


  1. Substitutions:
    1. Players may leave and re-enter only after a point was scored, a time-out, at the start of a half, or for an injury.


  1. Starting the game:
    1. Representatives of each team will flip a disc. One team will either call “Same” or “Different” while the discs are in the air. The team that wins the flip will either get to pull/receive, or select which goal they’d like to defend. The loser has the remaining option.


  1. Signing In:
    1. Players must have their name on the scoresheet in order to play. Players must sign in and provide their ID.


  1. Scoring:
    1. A goal is worth one (1) point.
    2. A game lasts until one team scores twenty-one (21) goals with a margin of victory of at least two (2) goals or time is up.
      1. Scoring Details: A goal is scored when an offensive player completes a pass to a teammate in the end zone which his/her team is attacking.
      2. In order for the receiver to be considered in the end zone after gaining possession of the disc, his/her first point of contact with the ground must be completely in the end zone.
      3. A player cannot score by running into the end zone with the disc.
      4. A player must be completely in the end zone and acknowledge that he/she has scored a goal. If that player plays the disc unknowingly into a turnover, then no goal is awarded.


  1. Playing the game:
    1. Teams will switch sides after halftime.
    2. A throw off, or “pull” will start the game. As soon as the disc is released, all players may move in any direction.
      1. No player on the throwing team may touch the disc until it is touched by a member of the receiving team.
      2. If a member of the receiving team catches the throw in the air, that player must put the disc into play from that spot. If the throw-off is caught in the end zone, the player takes possession at that point and puts the disc into play.
      3. If the Frisbee is dropped after an attempt to catch a throw-off, it is a turnover.
      4. If a member of the receiving team touches the disc during the flight of the throw-off and the receiving team fails to catch it, the other team will gain possession of the disc.
      5. If the receiving team allows the throw-off to hit the ground untouched, the receiving team gains possession of the disc where it stops, not where it first lands.
      6. If the disc goes out of bounds on the throw-off, the disc will be played by the receiving team at the point where it went out of bounds.
    3. Throwing:
      1. The thrower is the offensive player in possession of the disc, or the player who has just released the disc.
      2. If the disc is on the ground, whether in or out of bounds, any member of the team becoming offense may take possession of the disc. Once an offensive player has picked up the disc, that player is required to put the disc into play.
      3. The thrower must establish a pivot foot and may not change that pivot foot until the throw is released, except in the case where the thrower has received a pass while running and is throwing before the third ground contact. Once a pivot foot is established, it must stay planted. If a pivot foot is changed, it is a turnover.
      4. If the disc is dropped by the thrower without defensive interference, it is consider an incomplete pass.
      5. A defensive player who establishes possession of the disc becomes the thrower, but may not throw the disc before he/she establishes a legal pivot foot. To do so, is a traveling violation.
      6. If the Frisbee lands out of bounds or is caught out of bounds, the team now in possession must tap the Frisbee back in bounds in order to initiate play.
    4. The Marker
      1. Only one defensive player may guard the thrower at any one time; that player is the marker.
      2. The marker may not straddle the pivot foot of the player.
      3. There must be at least one arm length between the upper bodies on the thrower and the marker at all times. It is the mutual responsibility of both player to respect each other’s position and not encroach into this area once it is established.
      4. The marker cannot position his/her arms in such a manner as to restrict the thrower from pivoting.
      5. Stalling: the thrower cannot hold the disc for more than ten seconds. The marker must count out the stall; “Stall 1, Stall 2, Stall 3… Stall 10”
    5. The receiver must catch the disc while having both feet completely in bounds. If any part of their foot is on or over the out of bounds line, it will result in a turnover.



The NMU Recreational Sports Office reserves the right to modify and/or remove any of these guidelines or rules for the improvement of the sport. All participants are expected to comply with these rules and policies that are stated within this publication.