Friday, July 11, 2008

The rules on playing polo

I admit it and I'm not ashamed! I had no idea what polo was all about when I was asked to attend and cover a wine tasting event at the Myopia Hunt Club and as many of you know, this is the concept of my web site. When I learn... I share... and I share through my web site New England Fine Living, my blog, and my big mouth. Below, I am posting information I got off another web site on the rules and concept of polo. If you ever get to a match and you did not already know how to play or why they were hitting that little ball off of a horse, here you go!

From the International Women's Polo Association

Two underlying concepts govern the game of polo.

The first is that polo is a tactical team sport with either 3(indoor or enclosed arena) or 4(full size ground) players a side.

Like all tactical team sports, each player fills a specific role and supporting the team effort on both offence and defence.
The objective of the game is for a team to score the most goals by hitting the ball through their goal posts at the end of the ground.

Like other high contact team sports such as Rugby or Football, defensive plays, such as "riding off" and "hooking" are important defence tactics and can result in fouls which incur penalties.

Normally, polo is played on an outdoor polo field which is 300 yards long and 160 yards across, the area of 10 football fields.

The second is "the line of the ball". This is the imaginary line the ball creates as it travels from point A to point B.

This "line" determines the strict rules about how players can approach and attack the ball and each other, ensuring that the players and horses, travelling at 35mph when at top speed, do not collide resulting in serious injury to either horse or rider.

When two players ride to the ball, both hoping to hit it, they must ride on either side of the "line" so that both will have access to the ball. They must remain on opposite sides of the line, thus minimizing the risk of collision.

The line remains set until the ball is struck by a player, changes direction, and a new line is formed.

A player may cross the line only when it does not create a hazardous situation such as a collision with another rider. This may result in a foul and consequent penalty being awarded. read more

Linda Calder Smith, owner of is an Allied ASID Interior Designer in Middleton MA, Westford MA, New England, owner of New England Fine Living, and Party Planner North of Boston. Classic New England Style or Glam Interior Design and parties have been most recently completed in Middleton, Carlisle, Andover, North Andover, Marblehead, Boston, Salem, Newburyport, Newbury, Ipswich, Westford, Boxford, Topsfield, and so many more surrounding towns!