Information on the
BCWPA Rules and Regulations - Waterpolo
The official rulebook for the BCSSA is
We will post regular updates to this section as rules and regulations
change or are amended over time. Note that the information posted here
is for your education only. There is always the possibility that our
site may be slightly out of date, so please check often with the BCSSA
for the latest information on rules and regulations.
Click here for the complete handbook on the rules of water polo -
from the BC Waterpolo Association
Learn the Lingo -
Waterpolo Glossary of Terms
Advantage rule: The
referee's option not to call a foul if that call would
benefit the offending team.
Backhand: A shot
or pass that is thrown backward.
Under: A foul
that is called on a player who takes or holds
the ball underwater while being tackled by an
Brutality: A foul
called for rough or dangerous play such as
elbowing, punching or otherwise intending to
injure an opponent or official.
A hard shot aimed at or near the goalie's head,
which results in a goal; also called a "donut."
defensive player whose main job is to defend
against the opposing centre-forward.
Centre-Forward: The main
attacking player who is positioned in front of
the opponent's goal between the two-metre and
four-metre lines. Also known as the "hole man,"
"hole set" or "two-metre man."
throw: A free
throw awarded to the offensive team when a
defensive player touches the ball last before it
goes over the goal line, outside the goal
itself. Taken at the side wall at the two-metre
shot aimed at or near the goalie's head, which
results in a goal. Also called a "bunny."
with the ball.
player without the ball swims quickly to the
front of the opposing goal.
defensive strategy in which players protect the
centre of the pool and attempt to block the
shots on goal.
pass: A pass
that can be caught above the water.
Eggbeater: A leg
kick used by players to raise themselves
vertically and tread water at the same time.
Exclusion Area: The area
to which offending players are sent for serious
fouls for 20 seconds unless their team is scored
A foul that results in the offending player
being sent to the exclusion area. These include:
interfering with a corner throw, free throw or
goal throw; holding or pulling an opponent who
isn't holding the ball; intentionally striking
or splashing an opponent.
Four-metre foul: A foul
by a defensive player attempting to prevent a
goal in the four-metre area. This results in a
penalty throw for the opposing team.
imaginary line across the pool, at the mouth of
the goal, marked by white buoys.
Half-distance line: An
imaginary line marked by white buoys that
divides the playing area in half.
defensive player who is positioned in front of
the net and guards the opposing centre-forward.
defensive strategy in which players block the
opponent's passing lanes by positioning
themselves between the ball and the players they
to a short-handed situation in hockey, when a
team plays with one less player for 20 seconds
or less because of a foul.
to a pick in basketball, where an offensive
player runs interference for a teammate,
allowing him to pass or shoot the ball.
throw: A throw
taken by an offensive player from the four-metre
line with only the goalkeeper defending. Awarded
when a defending player commits a foul inside
the four-metre line.
offensive spot located furthest from the goal at
Seven-metre line: An
imaginary line across the pool, marked by green
buoys, located seven metres from each goal.
an opponent underwater during a tackle.
to shoot or advance the ball within 35 seconds
of gaining possession, resulting in loss of
Swim-off: The race
at the start of the game in which players swim
for the ball in the centre of the pool.
Two-metre line: An
imaginary line across the pool, indicated by red
buoys located two metres from each goal.
Invented in the late nineteenth century in
Great Britain and played in many countries around the world, notably
including Hungary, the game involves teams of seven players (plus up to
six substitutes), with a ball similar in size to a soccer ball but
constructed out of waterproof nylon. The goal of the game is to throw
the ball into the team's goal net at the end of the pool, and prevent
the opposition from doing so at the other end of the pool.
Men's water polo was the first Olympic team sport. It debuted in the
1900 games. Women's water polo was introduced in the Sydney 2000 Olympic
Games after political protests from the Australian women's team. Such
protests were rewarded when Australia won the gold medal match against
the United States with a "buzzer-beater" last-minute goal, taken from
the half-way line.
The annual Varsity Match between Oxford and Cambridge Universities is
the longest running water polo fixture in the world, having run since
Haney Neptunes - last update
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