Quoits (Rules and Gameplay Instructions)

Quoits is an ancient game that originated during the Greek or Roman Empire. Over the years, this event became less competitive, and similar games, such as Horseshoes, took popularity. Read on to learn the Quoits rules, history, and gameplay instructions. 

Backyard picnic past-time, Quoits is an outdoor game that people of all ages have enjoyed for centuries worldwide. You can use the game of Quoits to demonstrate your strength and accuracy, but many people today play Quoits for recreational enjoyment.

This Quoits rules guide will cover the following:

  • What is Quoits?
  • A brief history of Quoits
  • What you’ll need to play Quoits
  • Quoits Rules
  • How to play Quoits (Video Tutorial)
  • FAQs

Read on to learn how to play Quoits.

What is Quoits?

Similar to the game of Horseshoes, the game Quoits is an outdoor ring-toss style game that uses two posts, called hobs, distanced from one another. Players aim to toss their rope rings circling the posts more frequently than their competitors. 

Number of Players: 2-4

Ages: 5+

Difficulty: Easy

Length of Play: 20 minutes

Category: Outdoor games, Carnival games

Similar to: Horseshoes, Cornhole, Kan Jan

Main Objective: The team or players to successfully earn 21 points first wins!

Why We Love It: This social game is quick and easy to learn. Liven any cookout or picnic with a family-friendly game of Quoits. 

A Brief History of Quoits

Dating back to the Greek or Roman empire, it is believed that Quoits was initially developed after a disc throwing game. Competitors threw discs, or flat stones, to show their strength and skill.

Some Quoits games use iron rings weighing around 3 pounds, but the Quoits are sometimes made of rope or rubber. 

People originally played the game with only one significant stake in the middle of the playing area. Men would challenge one another by throwing the rings in hopes of circling the post. 

Today, Quoits is played with two hobs strategically placed apart, similar to games such as Horseshoes or Cornhole. 

What You’ll Need to Play Quoits

Everything you need to play is included in this boxed set.

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The complete game box contains: 

  • 2 solid wood targets with 9-inch pins
  • 3 blue rope rings
  • 3 red rope rings

Area of Play

Players begin by setting up the play area in an ample open space.

Position each post precisely 21 feet away from each other in the middle of your court. 

You must place each post within a 3 x 3’ square or 4’ circular area called the pit. Define the pit with exposed sand or clay. Imagine a pitcher’s mound, for example. 

Divide players into two teams, or simply play against one other person. Decide which team will use the red rings and which players will play using blue. 

A steel pin or hob is placed within the center of the pit. Manufactured game editions include a premounted post, so no digging is required. 

Quoits Rules

Players or teams should alternate pitching Quoits from opposing foul lines to ensure fair gameplay.

Foul lines are designated lines running directly from either side of the hob through the pit. The foul lines are perpendicular to the throwing direction. Players will stand behind the foul lines when tossing Quoits. 

You can flip a coin or Quoit to determine which team or player will start the game. The pitching order remains the same throughout the entire game.

In a game of opposing teams, one player from each team can toss from either hob, so players won’t have to walk back and forth. When pitching the Quoit, players may step forward as long as their feet stay behind the foul line. 

The game consists of rounds. Players try to toss their Quoit to land on the hob or as close to it as possible. Depending on your participants, you can decide how points will be awarded.

How to Keep Score in Quoits

Each round consists of four pitches, two from each player in a 2-player game or one pitch from each person in a 4-player match. 

At the end of 4 pitches, participants decide which Quoits score points based on the following circumstances: 

  • If the closest first and second Quoit most relative to the hob are from the same team, they claim the points for that round. 
  • In competition-style games, it may be necessary to measure Quoits to determine the score. 
  • If opposing Quoits are equally distant from a hob, they can cancel each other out. 
  • Quoits thrown out of the predetermined pit area do not count. 
  • Any Quoits that land or bounce out of the pit area are not scored.

Scoring Descriptions

  • Point: The closest Quoit to land at least a half-Quoit diameter distance from the hob is worth one point. 
  • Toucher: A Quoit that lands directly beside the hob, touching, is also worth one point, but it beats out a “point.” 
  • Leaner: Earn two points for a Quoit that leans, touching the top side of the hob. Earn one point for a Quoit that leans against the bottom of the hob. 
  • Ringer: The top or only ringer to completely circle the hob is worth three points. If multiple Quoits ring a hob, only the Quoit on top is worth points. 

A ringer will always beat a leaner. If there are matching learners or touchers by opposing players, they cancel out. 

Teams continue to play until one team reaches 21 points. Then, to end the game, one team must have at least a 2-point lead. 

Gameplay continues until a team wins with at least 21 points and has a two-point lead. 

Scoring Variations

Players may accept variations to the scoring rules depending on your game and participants. For example, players may count only Ringers during gameplay to make scoring easier. 

Another alternative is to minimize the spacing between hobs. This allows for easier aiming when players pitch Quoits. 

How to Play Quoits – Video Tutorial

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is the aim of Quoits?

Players aim to successfully ring the posts by tossing Quoits from a measured distance. The player or team to ring the most Quoits around the hob, or nearest to the hob, wins!

How do you play Quoits for kids?

Kids can easily play Quoits, but they may need a few modifications to enjoy the game. You can move the posts closer to allow for a shorter throwing distance. 

Another modification is to use a lighter form of Quoit. Rings made of rope or rubber will weigh less than iron rings, making them easier for children to toss.

How far back do you stand when playing Quoits? 

Regarding the distance between hobs, the standard measure is 21 feet or seven yards for spacing. You can move the hobs closer to make the game less challenging or non-competitive. Be sure to measure from the center of each hob for accurate spacing.

Other Games Similar to Quoits (Our Guides)

Be sure to try out these other fun outdoor party games at your next family barbeque or neighborhood picnic: 

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