IWRF to update wheelchair rugby official rule book

The language of the sport will align with that of its able-bodied counterpart 25 Sep 2017
IWRF logo

Official logo for the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation


The International Wheelchair Rugby Federation (IWRF) has announced that it would like to align the language of its sport with that of its able-bodied counterpart rugby. Part of the alignment includes updating the rules of wheelchair rugby to reflect the IWRF partnership with World Rugby.

A new rule book will be published on 1 January 2018 reflecting changes mentioned below. The changes are to the language used in wheelchair rugby, not changes to the way the game is played.

Effectively two changes to the language used by wheelchair rugby will reflect the global sport of rugby – change goal to try, and cone to posts. Therefore:

1. Goals will now be called Tries

2. Penalty Goals will be called Penalty Tries

3. Goal Line will be called Try Line

4. Cones will be called Posts

According to the IWRF, the language has been trialed at various events this year, most notably the Test event for the World Championships next year in Sydney. The commentators during this event used the word “try” instead of “goal.”

Wording of wheelchair section of the rule book

Over the last 18 months the Technical Commission has been working with two wheelchair manufacturers and the wheelchair subcommittee to improve the wording of Section 4 of the rule book. This pertains to the rules that are applicable to the wheelchair.

This is still a work in progress – but should be completed in time for the 1 January release of the updated rule book.

Court markings

The instructions and requirements for marking the court will also be updated to ensure courts are easy to mark out and provide the space around the court for players to be able to play the game. Examples are:

1. Penalty Score table to be move further from the sideline to 1.5 meters

2. Substitution area will be between the score-bench and the team bench

The revised and updated rule book will have explanations for all changes made when released in January 2018.

More on the updating of the wheelchair rugby official rule book can be found on the IWRF’s website.