How to play Ultimate Ball (i.e. Ultimate Frisbee with a ball!)

One of the more popular games among a young crowd is Ultimate Frisbee. In fact, Ultimate is competitively at over 700 colleges, in clubs by thousands of adults and youth, and internationally at the World Games. Throwing a Frisbee can be challenging to youth and limiting to the game of Ultimate. By replacing the the flying disc with a ball, youth of varying skill levels are able to enjoy this game. The Game of the Week is Ultimate Ball!

Group Size:  Large group (10 or more)

Age Group:  Grades 3+
Length of Activity:  10 minutes or more
Equipment:  Cones and a medium sized soft dodgeball

Before You Start: 

  • Use the cones to create boundaries for a field with two end zones.
  • Divide the players into two even teams.
  • Explain the rules and have players explain them back to you.
  • Have one player from each team do Ro Sham Bo (also called Rock-Paper-Scissors) to determine who will have possession first.
  • Line both teams up on each baseline of the field.

Set Up: 

Mark off a large open playing field in the shape of a rectangle with cones.

How To Play: 

  • On the leader’s signal, the team starting on defense throws the ball to the offensive team.
  • One player from the offense either catches the ball or picks it up where it lands, and tries to pass it to one of his/her teammates.
  • When anyone on either team has the ball, s/he can only use one foot to move, pivoting around the other foot which must be planted on the ground. They cannot take steps or run with the ball.
  • The offense tries to advance the ball down the field with passes, and scores a point if one of the team members catches the ball in the end zone.
  • The defense tries to block or knock down the ball to gain possession. If a ball is knocked down or intercepted, play of the game is switched and the defense now becomes the offense, heading toward their end zone.
  • Players may not touch each other, even while playing defense and must keep a safe distance from the player with the ball.


  • Use different colored jerseys if necessary to clarify the teams, as directions change often in this game and players may get confused.
  • For those just learning the game, allow one or two steps when they are throwing the ball.
  • Change the ball to a football, making it a lead-up game to Football.
  • Change the ball to a frisbee for more skilled players. This game is called Ultimate Frisbee.

Find more new and exciting games in our games library!

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