Did you ever learn how to play horseshoes? Let www.GameOnFamily.com teach you the horseshoes rules for this classic outdoor game. Game on!

How to Play Horseshoes – a game of skill and accuracy!

Horseshoes is a fun game that you can play outdoors during the summer holidays. Learning how to play horseshoes involves accuracy and skill that can only be built up by practicing.  So you should start playing right away! It’s not as challenging as it’s made out to be, and can provide lots of fun for you and your friends.

The origin of the horseshoes game is in the name; according to Tridelec.com, blacksmiths and farriers used to play this game with each other by throwing horseshoes onto a stake, seeing who could get the most on the pole. Today this has evolved into a full on sport with scoreboards as well as horseshoe courts.

If you have never played this game before, don’t worry! All you have to do is follow these simple horseshoes rules and you’ll be ready to play!

Game Set-up

You will need a horseshoes kit; you can buy one at almost any store that sells games. If you don’t have a set, you can also use rings as a substitute. These rings or horseshoes may not be more than 2 pounds 10 ounces. You will then also need stakes or poles, no taller than 14 – 15 inches above the ground. You will also need a friend to play with.

How to Play Horseshoes

  1. Firstly, you will need to set the court up following the simplified version of the court. Plant your poles in the ground no more than 40 feet apart, and mark the starting line 27 feet from the pole. Draw a foul line 3 feet away from the pole.
  2. Each player will receive 2 horseshoes. The player who goes first will pitch his own horseshoes followed by the opponents.
  3. When pitching these horseshoes, you may not go over the foul line. If you do, you lose your turn and your friend gets to go.
  4. Scoring will work as follows:
    • You will get a point if your horseshoe is one horseshoe’s length away from the stake, but only if yours is the closest.
    • Two shoes closer than your opponent’s will give you 2 points.
    • You get 3 points if your shoe hits the stake and falls on it.  This is called a ringer and it has to cover the entire stake.
    • If you have the closest shoe as well as a ringer you will receive 4 points.
    • Cancel the points if your opponent throws a ringer on top of yours.
  5. Players will play until the person reaches a score of 40, but you may change this number to opt for a longer or shorter gameplay.

Horseshoes Game Variations

  • A great idea would be to play in teams, and follow the steps given above. You can also choose to play based on a shoe-score instead of a point score. Here the person who has the most shoes on the court will be the winner.
  • It would also be a fun alternative to change this into a tournament if you are a more experienced player. Winners face winners until the ultimate horseshoes champion is crowned.

Horseshoes Video Tutorial