The Rules of Frishoe

Layout of the pitch

The Frishoe pitch or court, typically on a grass field or yard, consists of two stakes or posts each two feet high and 7/8 inch in diameter, sharpened at one end and planted in a vertical position roughly 25 yards (or adult strides) apart. Depending on players’ skill level and strength, wind conditions or available space, the pitch may be lengthened or shortened to suit. A small white stone or electric candle - the “indicator rock/light” - is balanced on top of each post to help determine if it has been struck by a disc during play (called a strike). Should a post be displaced by a strike, the player getting the strike shall reposition the post and indicator light before any further play, leaving the disc where it landed.


Order of Play

Each player uses a set of three discs of a different color from their opponents (see header image). Standing behind one post, each player throws a disc aiming at the far post, alternating with their opponents. A single Frishoe round is completed when all players complete their throws (three throws for each player). The objective is to either hit the far post, or get closer to it than one’s opponents. Unless they are playing in teams (explained below), after a round the players move to the far post and play the next round by throwing in the opposite direction.


Hitting the far post (such that the indicator light usually falls off), whether in the air or on a bounce or roll, is called a strike and earns a player 5 points. Any subsequent strike by the same player in the same round is an additional 5 points. If another player gets a strike in the same round, "topping" the first player's strike, the 5 points are awarded to the second player instead of the first. If no player gets a strike, the disc closest to the post earns 2 points, the next closest 1 point. If one player gets two discs closer than her opponents (called a double), she earns all 3 points. If she gets all three discs closer than her opponents (called a triple), she gets 5 points. A player hitting the very top of the post, necessarily striking the indicator light first (called a topper), gets 10 points. Whoever reaches or exceeds 21 points first wins the game. 

Ten second rule, balks

In windy conditions, players may be tempted to delay their throw until the breeze dies down. To prevent delay of game, no more than 10 seconds shall elapse between starting a round or the landing of the previous player's throw and the initiation of the next player’s throw. Exceeding 10 seconds in initiating a throw results in the throw being forfeit. Once a throw has been initiated by an arm or leg movement, it must be completed, otherwise it counts as a balk and is forfeit.


Calling a strike - "callzies" 

If a player judges that her throw is going to hit the post, she may choose to call the strike by clearly and loudly saying "callzies!" before the disc reaches the post. If she gets the strike (hits the post), she is awarded 10 points, but if not, 5 points are deducted from her score. If a called strike is missed, any points made by that player in the round by having closer discs will be awarded as usual. For example, should she have the closest disc at the end of the round (2 points) but calls and misses a strike (-5 points), her total score for the round would be minus 3. A player can therefore have less than zero points in a game, for instance if she calls and misses a strike in the first round and gets no other points, her score would be -5. 

Order of play

The players may decide by lot or mutual consent the order of play in the first round. Subsequently, the player with the most points will go first in any round, the player with the next most points will go second, and so forth. Whoever has caught up by making a tie in the previous round will precede the player she has tied with in the current round. When playing a series of games, whoever won the previous game, or has won the most games, shall start the first round of any subsequent game.

Team play

When playing in teams there are two players on each team, one member of each team positioned at each end of the pitch. There can be two, three or more teams, each with its own three discs. For the duration of the game a member of each team remains at their end of the pitch, throwing at the far post. After a round, the players at the far post, one from each team, will throw in the opposite direction.


If all parties agree about which discs are closest, no measurement is necessary. To determine the distance from the post when it isn’t clear which disc is closest, use a measuring tape or a simple unmarked line, measuring from the edge of the disk to the closest side of the post, with one player at each end. When using an unmarked line, after measuring the first disc simply hold the line at the post while the other player moves the other end of the line to the next disc to be measured.

Equalizing the game for children and less experienced players

To equalize the game and make it more competitive for players of different skill levels, or between children and adults, individuals can stand agreed-upon distances in front or in back of the stake when taking their turns. To increase the level of difficulty, simply lengthen the pitch to 30, 35 or 40 yards. On windy days, reduce the length of the pitch as necessary.


Questions? Be in touch using the contact page - we want to help get you started!

What's New?

- Frishoe to be featured at Somerville's Family Fun Day, see here.

- Game sets now available for sale, see equipment page.



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