About Segway Polo
Segway Polo: The Basics
The basics of Segway Polo are pretty simple; 2 teams of 5 players each attempt to put a ball through the goal of the opposing team. The other basic rules are as follows:
- The regulation field size is 200 feet (61 meters) by 128 feet (39 meters).
- The goal is 8 feet (2.4 meters) wide by 5 feet (1.5 meters) high.
- A regulation match consists of four 8 minute chukkers.
- The mallet must be held in the right hand at all times.
- The ball can be struck with the mallet or any part of a player’s body or Segway but may only be directed using the mallet. A goal can not be scored off of any part of a player’s body or Segway unless it occurs accidentally.
- A player following most closely to the line that the ball is traveling in has the Right of Way.
- No player may cross the line traveled by a player with the Right of Way if, by doing so, it would cause a collision.
- A player may hook another players mallet when that player is attempting to strike the ball. The hook may only occur on the downswing.
History of Segway Polo
The Bay Area Segway Enthusiasts Group (Bay Area SEG) began playing Segway Polo in July of 2004. The group and the sport have received widespread attention in the media and interest has grown worldwide.
However, Segway Polo wasn’t created by members of the Bay Area SEG. Unbeknownst to the Bay Area SEG players, at least one other group had played a version of the game at a Minnesota Viking’s half-time. Bay Area SEG got involved with Segway Polo when one of their members, Jonathan van Clute, suggested that they try to put together a polo match. While there was interest, it took Alex Ko to actually put together a couple of mallets using PVC pipe and get out there with Jonathan to see if polo on the Segway would really work and, more importantly, be fun. It turned out to work very well and was a lot of fun.
After a couple of months of talking about it and working with everyone’s schedules they organized the first actual “match” on July 11, 2004. Five Bay Area SEG members (Jon Bauer, Paul Costa, Alex Ko, Stuart Moore & Jonathan van Clute) showed up to that first match and played a 2-on-2 game. Everyone had a great time so they planned more games and more people started to show up. Today it’s not uncommon to have 20 or more players at the twice-monthly pickup games.
As any sport develops rules become necessary. A simplified version of the rules was formalized shortly after regular matches were scheduled and the players have worked as a group to continually update and change them as necessary. A more thorough version of the rules, tailored to tournament play, was created in early 2007 and continues to be refined through the ISPA Rules Committee.
The International Segway Polo Association, ISPA, was also conceived in early 2007 and will be formalized by the end of 2009.
As mentioned previously, there has been increasing interest in playing Segway Polo throughout the U.S. as well as other countries such as; New Zealand, Germany, UAE, France, Switzerland and Austria.