Underwater hockey is just as the name says it is. It is hockey played underwater. Of course some of the rules have been changed to accommodate the different medium. For instance they don’t insist that a goalie stay in net all game underwater with no scuba equipment. But the do have sticks and a puck and they are shooting at a goal just like regular hockey. Besides that underwater hockey has no goalies. Underwater hockey starts with each team poised against the wall of the pool waiting to dive after the puck that has been placed at the bottom of the pool in the center. When the referee blows the whistle both teams try and move the puck to the other team’s end and score by pushing the puck into the other team’s goal. Once a goal is scored each team must return back to their original starting point and wait for the signal to go again. Basically that is it. There can be substitutions and each underwater hockey league has its own rules on how long each period is, how many players can be competing per team, and if there is anything specific about substitutions that needs to be addressed those are addressed as well. The sticks are only about 10 inches long so the play is in very close quarters.
Underwater rugby is a new and growing game developed primarily as a physical fitness exercise but it is beginning to develop into a sport all over the world. Basically two teams try to get a ball filled with salt water across the other team’s goal. The game moves very quickly and there are usually many substitutions. The only real rule is that the ball cannot leave the water and you cannot do anything that would cause an opponent to not be able to breathe. Other than that it is pretty much a free for all that moves fast and is catching on all over the world.
Underwater sports are popping up all over the place but don’t bother pulling up a chair to watch a game because you won’t be able to see a thing. It really makes a person wonder how these great spectator sports are getting turned into underwater sports where spectators are at a distinct disadvantage.