We play non-contact football

To avoid injury, we aim for no physical content, calling a foul for tackling from behind or through the legs. This is the most black-and-white option for the “referee” to interpret consistently.

There is no running – on or off the ball

This rule is intended as a leveller between younger and older (sometimes slower) players. It means you have to have some part of one foot on the ground at all times. Whilst this is not so easy for the referee to judge, we encourage players to call out infringements.

The ball must stay below 6 feet high and headers are not allowed

This rule is also intended to avoid injuries – by keeping the ball low, typically playing with the side of the foot, we reduce the chance of it impacting the upper body. Neither do we want clashes of heads as opposing players go for a high ball.

The “D” around the goal is a no-go area

Only the goalkeeper should be in the “D” – defenders entering the area will give away a penalty and attackers entering the area will give possession to the goalkeeper. The goalkeeper may not come out of the “D”.

Other items to note

  • play stops if someone falls over or pulls up injured.
  • we play 7-minute games throughout the sessions, to avoid over-exertion.
  • since it is usual for more than 10 players to join a session, we choose multiple teams of 5 or 6 players and alternate playing and resting periods for each team.

How do your rules relate to the FA’s attempts to unify the game?

We are pretty much in line with the FA – the most obvious area of difference is that we treat all free kicks as indirect.