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IM Ultimate Rules are based on the UPA Ninth Edition Rules of Ultimate. All players are responsible for reading this document before playing. A more thorough rule explanation may be obtained from the IM Sports office.

Seven (7) players shall constitute a team. Five (5) players are the minimum to start a game. For Co-Rec teams, 3 of the 7 players must be women. Two (2) if the team starts with 5 players.
Each team is allowed a maximum of 14 players on their roster.

Any flying disc may be used as long as it is acceptable to both team captains or the currently accepted disc of the Ultimate Players Association (Wham-O 165g.). Players should bring both light and colored shirt to the game. Individuals may wear any soft protective clothing as long as it does not endanger the safety of any other player. All participants must wear athletic shoes. No bare feet. No hiking boots or trail shoes. See the guidelines on the main IM Sports rules page for footwear restrictions.

The field of play is a rectangular area with dimensions as shown on the accompanying diagram. Diagram for Field of Play

Game lasts until one team scores eleven (11) points with a margin of victory of at least two (2) goals, or until one team totals thirteen (13). “Plus One” Rule: If it becomes ten (10) of the hour and neither team has won, the “plus one” rule comes into effect and the game is played to “plus one” of the higher score.

Each team is permitted two (2) time-outs. Each time-out lasts up to two (2) minutes. When play resumes after a time-out taken during play, the following apply:

  • The player who had possession puts the disc into play. If the player calling the time-out leaves the field due to injury, the player replacing him/her puts the disc into play
  • The disc is put into play at the location where the disc was when the time-out was called
  • The play is resumed through the use of a check

Play begins with a throw-off. All players must be on or behind their own goal line until the disc is released. The receiving team must stand on their own goal line without changing position. Players are free to move after the disc is released. No player on the throwing team may touch the disc before it is touched by a member of the receiving team. The receiving team may elect to catch the disc or allow it to fall. If the disc lands in-bounds, play will resume at the spot where the disc stops. If the disc initially lands out-of-bounds, play may resume at the spot where the disc went out of bounds or at the center of the field perpendicular to where the disc went out-of-bounds.

Any area not on the playing field is out-of-bounds. The perimeter lines themselves are out-of-bounds. A disc is out-of-bounds when it first contacts an out-of-bounds area or contacts anything out-of-bounds. The disc may fly outside a perimeter line and return to the playing field, and defensive players may go out-of-bounds in order to make a play on the disc. For a receiver to be considered in-bounds after gaining possession of the disc, the first point of contact with the ground must be completely in-bounds. Should the momentum of a player carry him/her out-of-bounds after making a catch and landing in-bounds, the player is considered in-bounds. The player carries the disc to the point where s/he went out-of-bounds and puts the disc into play at that point.The thrower may pivot in- and out-of-bounds, provided that some part of the pivot foot contacts the playing field.

After a Change of Possession: If a team gains possession in the end zone which it is defending the player must immediately decide to put the disc in play from that spot or carry it directly to the goal line. If a team gains possession in the end zone which it is attacking, the player taking possession must carry the disc directly to the closest point on the goal line and put the disc into play from there. To fake or pause after gaining possession commits the player to put the disc into play at that point.

A goal is scored when an offensive player completes a pass to a teammate in the end zone that his/her team is attacking. The receiver’s first contact with the ground must be completely in the end zone. A player cannot score by running into the end zone with the disc. Should a receiver’s momentum carry him/her into the end zone after gaining possession, the receiver must carry the disc back to the closest point on the goal line and put the disc into play from there.

Fouls are the result of physical contact between opposing players as a result of offensive or defensive players playing the their opponents instead of the disc. This includes holding, pushing, clipping and submarining. The player who is fouled calls “foul,” play stops and the player gains possession at the point of the infraction (unless the pass is completed, in which case the play proceeds without stopping). Should a foul occur in the end zone, possession is regained at the goal line.


  • The thrower must keep all or part of the pivot foot in contact with a single spot on the field
  • If the receiver obviously takes more steps than are required to stop after catching a pass, that player has traveled
  • If a receiver, after receiving a pass on the run, releases a pass after the third ground contact and before coming to a complete stop, that receiver has traveled
  • If a travel occurs and is called, the offense must freeze and may resume play only after a check by the defense

Strip: No defensive player may touch the disc while it is in the hands of the thrower. If a defensive player does so, causing the thrower to drop the disc, the thrower calls “strip.” The thrower then picks up the disc and play continues immediately from the point where the thrower regained possession. If a count was in progress as the disc was stripped, the count is temporarily halted until the thrower regains possession.

Double-teaming: Only one defender is permitted to guard the thrower. Should the thrower recognize a double-team situation, s/he first calls “double-teaming” as a warning. If the defensive team continues to double-team, the thrower calls “double-teaming” again and it is a violation.

Stalling: A stalling violation occurs when the player guarding the thrower calls, after establishing guarding stance, “stalling” and counting at one second intervals from one to twelve (1-12). If the disc has not been released at the end of the count it is turned over to the defense at that point.

Picks: No player may establish a position, or move in such a manner, so as to obstruct the movement of any player on the opposing team; to do so is a “pick.” In the event of a pick, the obstructed player must immediately call “pick” loudly; play stops and is resumed after a check.

Clarifying Statements on Fouls, Violations, and Picks

Cardinal Rule: Whenever an infringement of the rules or time-out occur, play is halted and the disc is put back into play at the point of the last possession before play was stopped.

“Play on” Rule:

  • If the call is against the defense, the count is reset to zero (0).
  • If the call is against the offense, the count continues from the point at which it was stopped, except the thrower is given a minimum of five (5) seconds.
  • When play resumes after a time out, the stall count is continued from where it was when time out was called. The marker must initiate the count by calling “stalling” or “counting”
  • If the marker counts too fast, the thrower may call “too fast.” Play stops and is resumed with two seconds subtracted from the current count.

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