Dangerous Play Rule Change

TUC will be implementing a pilot project (in the Thursday Downsview HAT league and the Thursday Monarch Elite league) where the WFDF Dangerous Play rule will replace the USAU Dangerous Play rule. The goal of this change is to provide a safe environment for all TUC players in all games. At the core level, Ultimate is a non-contact sport and this rule embodies this principle of the game. Know up front this change will not be a perfect solution to something that may have happened in one of your past games and it will take time for all players to make an adjustment. How you play the game and communicate with your fellow players is the best way to implement change in your community. As always, play with spirit.

The new dangerous play rule

The rule being implemented is the WFDF Dangerous Play Rule 17.1.1

Reckless disregard for the safety of fellow players is considered dangerous play and is to be treated as a foul, regardless of whether or when contact occurs. This rule is not superseded by any other rule. If uncontested this must be treated as the most relevant foul.


Dangerous Play fouls can be called before an event to avoid a potential collision e.g. a defender runs/layouts in a way that an accident would occur if the offence were to continue. When this occurs it is correct to not make a play on the disc & to call a 'dangerous play' foul. 

Players calling a Dangerous Play foul before a potential incident need to have reasonable grounds for doing so. They should actually be able to see the oncoming player and have some reason to believe that player will not avoid contact - this could include a previous history of that player to not avoid contact. You cannot call Dangerous Play if you feel you could have made a play on the disc, but that would have resulted in you initiating contact. In that instance, you should just refrain from making the play. 

Key Difference

USAU Dangerous Play Rule WFDF Dangerous Play Rule
Contact must be made for the Dangerous Play Foul to be called. Contact need not be initiated for the Dangerous Play Foul to be called.
From the USAU rules (XVI C 3 annotations):
"Contact that occurs after the outcome of the play is determined cannot affect the play. For example, if a defender catches the disc before bumping into the receiver and knocking him over, that contact did not affect the play and the turnover will stand."
From the WFDF interpretations (17.5):
"Non incidental contact that occurs directly after the attempt at the disc (i.e. a defender catches the disc and then collides with an offence player) is considered to have occurred during the attempt at the disc."


What is the outcome of a Dangerous Play Foul?

Disc returns to the last uncontested throw. Stall count +1 Disc is awarded to the player making the call.


How is TUC monitoring & following up?

Throughout the pilot: 

  • There will be multiple check in points to gauge this new rule change.
  • Communication will be sent out to introduce the program and provide a contact for those requiring clarification of the rule. 
  • On a weekly basis, the captains will be asked if the new rule was used, the situation involved and the resulting outcome. This will help ensure the new rule is consistently enforced and gives the organization an opportunity to make any necessary changes to the rule going forward.
  • At the halfway mark of the season, all players in the league will be contacted to gather their feedback of the rule change and how it has affected their play. 
  • Following the results, the Board will review the feedback and determine if the rule should be applied to all leagues as is, modified and applied to all leagues, or revert back to USAU Dangerous Play Rule for all leagues. 

Contact & Feedback

For players participating in the pilot, please direct all questions and feedback to adults@tuc.org. Depending on the questions we receive, a community resource center may be created to assist with frequently asked questions. 

Dangerous Play rule change pilot project
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