Beach polo

Last updated

Beach polo is a team sport and close variant of arena polo.


Game play

A game of beach polo consists of two three-player teams as opposed to the usual four-player teams in field polo. A game consists of four seven-minute periods of play, called chukkers. The game is played in an enclosed sand arena with sideboards of approximately four feet in height, designed to keep the ball in play. Depending on playing areas available, some of the playing arenas have enclosed ends while others allow for 20 yards of run out room for the horses, past the end line, and utilize standing goal posts.

Two umpires are suggested for tournament play which may be stationed outside the arena to officiate the game. Penalties are called and resulting free hits are awarded to the fouled party.

Traditional polo ponies are used with players changing horses following each chukker.

Unlike the hard plastic ball used in field polo, beach polo employs a leather or rubber inflated ball no less than 12.5 inches in circumference. Other equipment employed is the same as that used in field or arena polo.


Reto Gaudenzi and Rashid Al Habtoor have been credited with the creation of the game in 2004 in Dubai, followed by the Miami Beach Polo World Cup in the United States in 2005 which also was created by Reto Gaudenzi and his son Tito. Reto Gaudenzi is also the inventor of Snow Polo that initiated in 1985 on the frozen lake of St. Moritz. Additional tournaments matches have arisen in Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, England, France, Germany, India, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Poland, Spain, Thailand, The Netherlands, Uruguay and Wales.

The most notable event of this kind continues to take place annually in Miami Beach. Having featured some of the best international polo players include Argentine 10-goaler Gonzalo Pieres, 8-goaler Alejandro Novillo Astrada, Mexico's late Carlos Gracida (9), USA's 9-goaler Nic Roldan amongst many more. This event is organized by Tito Gaudenzi and Melissa Ganzi to this day.

The island of Jersey (off the coast of Normandy, France) staged its first beach polo tournament in September 2012 while New Zealand staged a tournament in December 2013, and Croatia created their first beach polo event in 2016.

Related Research Articles

Polo Equestrian team sport

Polo is a horseback mounted team sport. It is one of the world's oldest known team sports.

Water polo Ballgame-team sport played in water by teams competing to put the ball into the opponents goal

Water polo is a competitive team sport played in water between two teams of 7 players each. The game consists of four quarters in which the two teams attempt to score goals by throwing the ball into the opposing team's goal. The team with the most goals at the end of the game wins the match. Each team is made up of six field players and one goalkeeper. Excluding the goalkeeper, players participate in both offensive and defensive roles. Water polo is typically played in an all-deep pool so that players cannot touch the bottom.

Buzkashi Central Asian sport played on horseback

Buzkashi is a Central Asian sport in which horse-mounted players attempt to place a goat or calf carcass in a goal. Similar games are known as kokpar, kupkari, and ulak tartysh in Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, and as kökbörü and gökbörü in Turkey, where it is played mainly by communities originally from Central Asia.


Polocrosse is a team sport that is a combination of polo and lacrosse. It is played outside, on a field, on horseback. Each rider uses a cane or fibreglass stick to which is attached a racquet head with a loose, thread net, in which the ball is carried. The ball is made of sponge rubber and is approximately four inches across. The objective is to score goals by throwing the ball between the opposing team's goal posts.

Beach soccer

Beach soccer, also known as beach football, sand football or beasal, is a variant of association football played on a beach or some form of sand. The game emphasises skill, agility and accuracy in shooting at the goal.

Cycle polo Team sport originating in Ireland; related to polo but played on bicycles

Cycle polo is a team sport, similar to traditional polo, except that bicycles are used instead of horses. There are two versions of the sport: grass and Hardcourt Bike Polo. The hardcourt game saw a sharp spike in interest in the first decade of the 21st century and new teams are sprouting up across the world in China, Canada, Ireland, Switzerland, France, India, Germany, Pakistan, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Hungary, Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, England, Scotland, Argentina, Italy, Spain, USA, Poland, Croatia, Slovenia, Lithuania, Nepal, Brazil and Cuba.

Adolfo Cambiaso

Adolfo Cambiaso is an Argentine professional polo player with a 10-goal handicap rating. He is currently ranked number one in the world.


Horseball is a game played on horseback where a ball is handled and points are scored by shooting it through a hoop with a diameter of 1m. The sport is like a combination of polo, rugby, and basketball. It is one of the ten disciplines officially recognized by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports.

Segway polo

Segway polo is a team sport which started to gain some measure of popularity after being played by members of the Bay Area Segway Enthusiasts Group in 2004. The Bay Area SEG was not the first to play polo on a Segway HT; a team sponsored by Mobile Entertainment played in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome at a Minnesota Vikings halftime show in 2003 although the Bay Area SEG members were not aware of this match at the time they first played the sport. Segway polo was developed as it is played today by the members of the Bay Area SEG and other groups and teams that have joined subsequently.

The Federation of International Polo is the international federation representing the sport of polo, officially recognized by the International Olympic Committee. It was founded in 1982 by representatives of eleven national polo associations, and currently represents the national polo associations of more than 90 countries. FIPs principal aim is to enhance the image and status of the great game of polo internationally.

The World Polo Championship is a polo competition between countries. The event is organised by the sport's governing body, the Federation of International Polo (FIP), and is contested by the national teams. There is no restriction on the gender of the players. The inaugural tournament was held in 1987, hosted by Argentina, and is now contested every three or four years.

Mariano Aguerre

Mariano Aguerre, is a professional polo player in Argentina and the United States. He achieved a 10-goal handicap in the United States in 1994 and in Argentina in 1998. He is currently rated at 9 goals in both countries. He is a nine-time winner of the Argentine Open at Palermo, winning with three different teams: Ellerstina, Chapa I and La Dolfina. The Museum of Polo and Hall of Fame announced that Mariano was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2017.

International Polo Club Palm Beach

The International Polo Club Palm Beach, located in Wellington, Florida, is one of the largest polo clubs in the world. The club includes several natural grass polo fields, two of which are part of stadiums.

Cowboy polo is a variation of polo played mostly in the western United States. Like regular polo, it is played in chukkas (periods) with two teams on horses who use mallets to hit a ball through a goal. It differs from traditional polo in that five riders make up a team instead of four, western saddles and equipment are used, and the playing field is usually a simple rodeo arena or other enclosed dirt area, indoors or out. Also, instead of the small ball used in traditional polo, the players use a large red rubber medicine ball and use mallets with long fiberglass shafts and hard rubber heads.

Arena polo is a fast-paced version of polo played outdoors on an enclosed all-weather surface, or in an indoor arena. Hurlingham Polo Association and US Polo Association have established their own rules for arena polo, and these rules are often used in other countries as well.

The United States Polo Association (USPA) is the national governing body for the sport of polo in the United States.

Polo in India

India is the birthplace of modern polo. The modern game of polo is derived from Manipur, where the game was known as 'Sagol Kangjei', 'Kanjai-bazee', or 'Pulu'. It was the anglicised form of the last, referring to the wooden ball that was used, which was adopted by the sport in its slow spread to the west.

Auto polo

Automobile polo or auto polo was a motorsport invented in the United States with rules and equipment similar to equestrian polo but using automobiles instead of horses. The sport was popular at fairs, exhibitions and sports venues across the United States and several areas in Europe from 1911 until the late 1920s; it was, however, dangerous and carried the risk of injury and death to the participants and spectators, and expensive damage to vehicles.

The sport of polo is played in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Greenwich Polo Club

Greenwich Polo Club is a polo club and event venue in Greenwich, Connecticut that was established in 1981. It is one of only three polo venues in the United States offering high-goal polo. The club hosts high goal polo matches throughout the summer, tournaments typically beginning in June and concluding in September.