How to Play Roller Hockey

Roller hockey, also called inline roller hockey, is generally a faster-paced and higher scoring game than ice hockey because there are no whistles blown for off-sides or icing. Additionally, you play roller hockey with 4 players on the rink plus a goalie, rather than 5 players used in ice hockey. Checking is not permitted in roller hockey. Here are the inline roller hockey rules.


  1. Image titled Play Roller Hockey Step 1
    Get the appropriate gear. In addition to inline hockey skates, a hockey stick, and bag to hold your gear, you will need the following:
    • Roller hockey players wear the same type helmet, mouth guard, elbow pad with shin guards, knee pads, gloves and long-sleeve jersey as ice hockey. Both types of hockey require youth players to have full face protection on the helmet.
    • Roller hockey players wear pants, rather than the padded breezers and socks used in ice hockey.
    • Because there's no checking, roller hockey players usually don't wear shoulder pads, but they do wear a short-sleeve shirt with padding to protect them from a flying puck.
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    Form a team of 6 to 14 players, plus 1 or 2 goalies.
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    Begin to play roller hockey with a face-off. Opposing players face each other, and the referee drops the puck between them. The face-off takes place at the center of the rink at the beginning of each period and after a goal is scored.
  4. Image titled Play Roller Hockey Step 4
    Score goals by shooting the puck into the other team's net. The goal doesn't count if the puck is kicked in. The goal counts if it's deflected in off another player, or a defending player accidentally makes the goal.
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    Avoid getting a penalty, which leaves your team "short-handed." Minor or major penalties may be a given for boarding, tripping, roughing, charging, cross checking, elbowing, kneeing, fighting, holding, interference of a player not in possession of the puck, or deliberate injury of a player. Stick penalties include holding a stick higher than shoulder height; slashing, spearing or hooking a player with the stick; or carrying a stick after it breaks. Penalties are also called if a player intentionally delays the game, or a player other than the goalie deliberately falls on the puck or covers it with a glove. (As with ice hockey, the whistle isn't blown for a penalty until the offending team gains possession of the puck.)
    • Minor penalties require sitting in the penalty box for 2 minutes. If the goalie incurs the penalty, a teammate will sit in the penalty box on behalf of the goalie. If 2 players are already in the penalty box, the third player will sit in the penalty box, but a player substitution is allowed until the first penalty expires.
    • Major penalties follow the same rules as a minor penalty, but the time is extended to 5 minutes.
    • Misconduct penalties are awarded for a second major penalty by the same player in the same game, abusive language to the referee, refusal to go to the penalty box, and other such inappropriate behavior. The play must leave the game for 10 minutes, and a teammate must serve the 5-minute major penalty in the penalty box.
    • A game misconduct penalty requires the offending player to leave the game and suspension from the next game.
    • A penalty shot is given if the defending team inhibits an opposing player from scoring. This may include tripping or hooking from behind, throwing a stick or glove in front of the player with the puck, a player other than the goalie falling on or picking up the puck in the crease (the area in front of the goal), or intentionally knocking the goal out of place.
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    Play the game for 2 periods lasting 20-minutes each, although youth games may be played with shorter periods. Each team may take a 1-minute timeout during each period.
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    Win inline roller hockey by scoring more goals than the opposing team before the clock runs out. In the event of a tie, a 10-minute (youth games may be a 5-minute overtime), sudden-death overtime period begins. If either team doesn't score during overtime, a shootout can be used.


  • Referees will issue a minor penalty for any player not wearing regulation gear.

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Categories: Team Sports