The intent of the game

Guts is one of the team events in the flying disc sports. It is played by two teams of five players each. The official disc of the game is the Pro model Frisbee disc. For informal play, a lightweight, blunt-rim disc such as the 100g DDC Frisbee is sometimes used. The playing field consists of two parallel goal-lines 15 m in length and 14 m apart. The teams stand in line opposite each other. Each team defends a goal- line. The disc is thrown back and forth between the teams. The object is to throw the disc through the line of defending players.The throwing team scores a point when the other team does not catch a correctly thrown disc. The receiving team scores a point when the disc is not thrown correctly. When a correctly thrown disc is caught by the other team, no points are scored. The team that first reaches 21 points, wins the game.

Key Rules (scroll down for the full set of rules)

  • A game consists of a series of exchanges in which one team throws the disc and the other team attempts to catch the disc. The teams are alternately throwing and receiving: in the next exchange the throwing team becomes the receiving team and vice versa.
  • For the first exchange of the game the throwing team appoints a thrower. Then in each exchange the disc is thrown by the player who caught the disc. When the disc was not caught, the throwing team scores a point. The next thrower is the player who last touched the disc or where the disc passed most closely.
  • A disc is thrown only when the players of the receiving team stand on their own goal line. The defenders stand an arm’s length apart so that their fingertips can just touch each other. The thrower must stand behind his or her own goal line.
  • A correctly thrown disc passes the goal line of the receiving team topside up and within reach of at least one defender. Players may not throw the disc above the extended reach of the receiving team. When the throw was not correct the receiving team scores a point. If a disc is thrown cor- rectly, a player of the defending team must catch the disc with one hand. The disc shall not touch any two parts of the defender’s body at one time. Also the disc shall not have touched the ground.
  • Each time a total of eleven points is reached, the teams change the goal line they are defending.
  • With the score at 20-20, play continues until one of teams leads by two points.

No referee

Like all flying disc sports guts is played without a referee. The players themselves are responsible for the course of the game. Observers sometimes assist in the determination of throws.

Full Rules
303. Rules of Play

303.01. Rules in Effect
The WFDF rules of play shall govern play for guts, except that a game may be played under any variations of the rules, if said variations are agreed upon by the two teams. In tournament play, such variations are subject to the approval of the tournament director.

A. Determining Possession: To determine which team will have possession at the start of the game, the disc flipping method shall be used as set forth in Article I of WFDF rules. The winner of the flip has the option of choosing to make the first throw or choosing the side of the field they will defend. The loser of the flip shall be given the remaining choice. In a two out of three match, the team losing each game has the option to choose first in the following game.

B. Start of Play: Prior to commencing the exchange, the team designated to make the first throw shall choose a thrower. The thrower shall signal his intention to deliver the throw by raising his arm and shall wait for a corresponding signal of readiness from the receiving team. After the readiness signal is received, all players on the throwing team, other than the thrower, shall hold their positions until the exchange is initiated.

C. Readiness: Prior to the commencement of the exchange, a player on the receiving team shall signal his team’s readiness to accept the throw, either vocally or by raising his arm. At that time, all players on the receiving team shall be positioned with their toes on the goal line and at such a distance apart that two players in adjacent positions shall be able to touch finger tips by extending their respective arms parallel to the ground in the direction of each other. Each player must remain in their position until the throw is released.

D. The Exchange: The exchange consists of the throw and the attempted catch, and ends upon a catch being made or a point being scored.

E. Movement by Receiving Team:Once the disc is released by the thrower, players on the receiving team may move in any direction.

F. Play: Play is accomplished by continuing one exchange after the next until one team scores enough points to win the game. After an exchange is completed, the teams shall alternate their roles such that the team that was the throwing team on the previous exchange shall become the receiving team, and vice versa.

303.02. Throwing
A. Designation of Thrower: The designation of a player to be the thrower for a given exchange shall be made by one of the following methods, depending upon the circumstances:

(1) Option of Throwing Team:The throwing team shall choose the thrower for an exchange for the initial throw of the game.

(2) Contingent Upon Previous Exchange: Whenever a player makes a good catch while his team is receiving, that player shall be the thrower on the subsequent exchange. If two players are equidistant from the throw and both fail to touch it, then the throwing team will decide which of the two players shall return the throw. Whenever the players on the receiving team fail to make a good catch, but do touch the disc during the exchange, the player who first touched the disc shall be the thrower on the subsequent exchange.

B. Good Throw: A good throw is made when all of the following requirements are met:

(1) The throw travels to or through the scoring zone of a player on the receiving team, reaching the goal line prior to touching the ground;
(2) The throw crosses or hits the goal line topside up at an angle of less than 90 degrees to the ground;
(3) The throw is released while the thrower’s supporting points are behind the foul line; and
(4) The disc is not intentionally bent to alter its true flight.

C. Positioning of Teammates: Teammates of the thrower may stand anywhere behind the foul line during the throwing exchange so long as their location does not obstruct the vision of, or otherwise distract the receiving team.

D. Fouls: Fouls occur whenever the thrower steps on the line before or during the release. Fouls shall be called by a designated player of the throwing team as they occur. The player designated shall be located on one end of the foul line to provide a clear view of the position of the thrower relative to the line.

303.03. Catching
A. Definition: A clean catch shall satisfy all of the following requirements:
(1) The disc shall be held solely in one hand long enough to establish complete control;
(2) The disc shall not be touched by any two parts of a player’s body at any one time; and
(3) The disc shall not touch the ground prior to all other prerequisites being satisfied.

303.04. Scoring Zone
A. Definition: The scoring zone is an area within which a receiving player, by using optimum effort, can reach an on-coming disc without leaving his feet. The scoring zone is in effect a two-dimensional vertical plane, perpendicular to the field and intersecting the field at the goal line. The perimeter of the scoring zone is delineated as follows:

(1) The bottom of the plane shall be the goal line;
(2) The top of the plane is an imaginary line, directly above and parallel to the goal line, which intersects the top of the longest finger of the longer arm of the receiving player when said arm is extended upward and perpendicular to the ground;
(3) The sides of the plane are imaginary lines, one on each side of the player, perpendicular to the goal line and the top of the plane, which intersect the outstretched longest fingers of each arm of the player when his arms are held parallel to the goal line.

B. Optimum Effort: A player shall not be required to leave the ground to reach a throw. If a receiving player does move in such a way (such as jump) as to vertically increase his reach beyond his optimum effort, a throw by or below the required outstretched hand shall constitute a good throw, notwithstanding that the throw may have been outside the player’s original scoring zone prior to the movement. By moving vertically, a player increases the height of his scoring zone.

303.05. Scoring
A. Game: Each game shall be played until one team scores 21 points, with a margin of victory of at least two points.

(1) A game with a score of 20 to 20 goes into overtime and play continues until a two- point margin is achieved by a team.

(2) Teams should switch ends of court at 11-point (cumulative) intervals.

B. Points: (1) A point shall be scored by the throwing team whenever a good throw is made into a scoring zone of one of the receiving players and the receiving team fails to make a good catch, unless a foul was committed by the throwing team, in which case no point is scored.

(2) A point shall be scored by the receiving team whenever the throwing team fails to make a good throw, unless the failure was the result of a foul, in which no point is scored. The receiving team shall not be required to make a good catch if a good throw is not made.

(3) A good throw by the throwing team with a corresponding good catch by the receiving team shall not be scored as a point for either team.

303.06. Substitutions
A. When Allowable: Substitutions may only be made when teams switch ends. Teams switch ends of court at 11-point (cumulative) intervals.

B. Injury: A team may substitute, at any time, for an injured player. Further, a team may substitute a player who is not a member of the team, for an injured player, as long as that player is not registered as a player on any other guts team in the tournament. The injured player is not permitted to return for the remainder of the match.

303.07. Judging
A. General: The players shall generally make the calls in the match. Usually the thrower shall make calls on the throw and the receiver shall make calls on the catch.

B. Disputes: In the event of a dispute, the team captains shall meet to discuss and resolve the dispute. If the dispute cannot be resolved, the throw attempt shall be repeated.

C. Observers: At their discretion, the captains, or the captains and the tournament director, may decide to select up to three experienced individuals, who are not participating in the game, to act as observers. The duty of the observer is to carefully watch the action of the game for the sole purpose of rendering a decision in the event of a dispute that cannot be resolved. Observers shall remain passive and shall not make any calls on their own initiative.

(1) When a dispute arises which cannot be resolved by the players involved or their captains, the observers may be called upon by the captains to make the call. The observer with the best view of the play makes the call. If the observers choose, they may discuss the play among themselves before rendering a decision.

(2) By calling in the observers, the teams agree to abide by the observers’ decision.

(3) Use of observers will be based on the observer’s handbook.


Exchange: One play of guts, commencing with the throw and ending with either a catch by the receiving team or a point being scored.

Foul Line: One of two parallel lines, 14 m apart, the other line being designated as the goal line. The foul line is the line closer to the throwing team while the goal line is the line closer to the receiving team.

Goal Line: See 301.01 relating to “foul line” for explanation.

Good Throw: A throw that meets the requirements set forth in section 303.02(B).

Optimum Effort: The extension of the hands and arms by the player on the receiving team nearest the disc as it crosses the goal line.

Receiving Team: During an exchange, the team involved in attempting to catch the thrown disc.

Scoring Zone: Area within which a receiving player, by extending his arms and hands, can reach an oncoming disc while his feet remain stationary. The scoring zone shall be delineated by an imaginary vertical plane as more fully set forth in section 303.05 herein. Each player has an individual scoring zone to his optimum effort. The team scoring zone is simply the cumulative of the player scoring zones.

Throwing Team: In an exchange, the team who is attempting to score by making a throw into a scoring zone of a player on the receiving team.

Vertical Plane: A plane, perpendicular to the ground, being two dimensional in nature, with said dimension defined by the foul line. With respect to the receiving team, the vertical plane shall equal the scoring zone, and shall be finite as set forth in section 303.05 herein. With respect to the vertical plane relating to the throwing team, the plane shall be infinite in nature, defined only by the proximity of the foul line and its perpendicular angle to the field.

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