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How to play horseshoes.
horseshoe pitching) is a great, simple game to play in your backyard
at your barbecue event. Professional tournament and league
competitions, including the World Horseshoe Tournament, are overseen
by the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association of America (NHPA).
There are several versions of the game, formal and informal. Here is
the basic set-up and easy-to-follow rules of one backyard version:
How to Play
To play the game, you need a
total of four horseshoes, two iron stakes, and a measuring tape.
Anchor the stakes firmly into the
ground, approximately 40 feet apart.
The number of players may consist
of either two people or two teams comprised of two people each.
Each person or team receives two
Decide on a set number of points
scored to determine the winning player or team (i.e. the first
player or team to score 40 points is the winner).
Flip a coin to decide which
person or team will go first.
Each person or team must equally
stand and pitch approximately 30 feet from the stakes.
The winner of the coin toss
throws one horseshoe at a time at the stake with the intent to
encircle or ring the stake, which is appropriately called a
ringer. The horseshoe toss alternates in that the opposing
player or team tries their hand next at ringing the stake. An
inning is played when each person or team has had their turn.
The scoring for each inning is as
follows: Three (3) points are scored for each successful toss
(i.e. ringer). (Remember, each person or team has two
horseshoes; therefore, each person or team gets two tosses, for
a potential score of six (6) points per turn). However, if an
equal number of ringers are scored by each opposing player or
team, this designates a tie and zero (0) points are awarded.
Likewise, if all the horseshoes land at an equal distance from
each stake for both of the players or teams, this is also
considered a tie and thus no points are gained. A player or team
is awarded one (1) point per horseshoe if it lands within six
(6") inches of the stake, and is closer to the stake than the
opponent’s horseshoe. (Therefore, if the tosses are unsuccessful
(not ringers), leave the horseshoes on the ground at the exact
spots each landed, because a possible two (2) points can be
awarded to a player or team if both horseshoes are closer to the
stake than the opponent’s horseshoes, and within six (6") inches
of the stake).
horseshoe tosses continue to alternate between each person or team.
The winner of the game is the person or team that is the first to
reach a predetermined number of points (i.e. 40 points).
No matter what sport or physical activity you and/or your guests
decide to participate in, this section provides useful information
and tips for optimal performance and enjoyment:
Stay Hydrated! If you and/or
your guests engage in outdoor physical activities, especially
during hot weather, remember to drink plenty of fluids! Drinking
pure water is a great option to replenish your fluids
during and after exercising. Most tap water is excellent.
However, if you are still concerned about lead content and other
potentially harmful particles in your tap water, using a water
filter or purifier is one way to go. A water filtration system
Brita, Culligan or Pur) can keep vital minerals in the
water like fluoride, while filtering out any contaminants or
pollutants that may be in your tap water.
While exercising, perspiration allows your body to cool off as the
sweat evaporates from your skin (a natural cooling mechanism), but
in the process of this thermoregulation you loose electrolytes in
addition to H2O. Therefore, if you’ve been especially
sweating a lot, you need to replenish your lost electrolytes.
In this case, sports drinks - fortified with electrolytes - (i.e.
Gatorade, Powerade, All Sport, Recharge, Extreme Ripped Force and
Champion Nutrition Revenge Sport) are good choices.
There are also other energy drinks available on the market, such as
vitamin-fortified water (i.e. Glacéau (a.k.a.
Glaceau) Vitamin Water, Glacéau Smart Water, Glacéau
Fruit Water, Glacéau Vitamin Energy, Propel Fitness Water and SoBe
Play it safe!
Wear the appropriate safety gear for each sport or activity you
engage in. Also, make certain that you have all the necessary
equipment for the sport or activity. Visit your local sporting
goods store for assistance.
warm-up! It’s important to stretch and warm-up before
participating in any physical activity or sport. Stretching has
many benefits: It allows your muscles and joints to relax, it
improves your range of motion and it may prevent injuries.
Before starting any sport or physical activity, consult your
physician and get a physical exam.
over-the-counter pain reliever handy! Don’t let minor
aches and pains slow you down or prevent you from participating
in a sport or physical activity you enjoy at your outdoor
barbecue event. Over-the-counter pain medication (i.e. Tylenol
(Acetaminophen), Motrin (Ibuprofen), Advil (Ibuprofen), Anacin
(Aspirin), Bayer (Aspirin), Aleve (Naproxen), etc.)
work great at relieving minor muscle and joint pain. Note:
Always consult your physician before taking any medication, and
use as directed.
emergencies arise, keep a cell phone handy, or even a
walkie-talkie! A walkie-talkie is a two-way radio transceiver,
which is convenient, portable and handheld. It allows you to
communicate with another person that is located at a reasonably
close distance to you (i.e. if you are in the backyard, you can
easily communicate with someone that is inside the house if you
are both using walkie-talkies). It’s a great way to keep in
first-aid kit handy! Accidents happen, so, for minor scrapes,
cuts, etc., readily have available bandages; gauze; adhesive
tape; sterile swabs; antiseptic (i.e. hydrogen peroxide topical
solution, antibiotic ointment (i.e. Neosporin), alcohol pads,
etc.); tweezers; anti-itch ointment (i.e. hydrocortisone); etc.
Seek medical attention if necessary.
sunburn! Protect your skin from the sun’s potentially harmful
rays, which may cause premature aging (i.e. wrinkles) and skin
cancer. So, don’t forget to wear sunscreen with an SPF of at
least 15 and one that offers broad spectrum protection against
both UVA and UVB rays. If participating in outdoor sports or
activities, consider wearing a sunscreen that is waterproof.
bug bites! Keep a bottle of bug spray handy. If you do get bit,
use anti-itch ointment (i.e. hydrocortisone) to help relieve the
sting of the bite.
at bay, and enjoy your time outdoors!
If you suffer from allergies, have readily available an
over-the-counter allergy medicine - (i.e. Claritin (Loratadine);
Benadryl (Diphenhydramine); Sudafed PE (Phenylephrine); Zyrtec (Cetirizine
HCl); Zyrtec-D (Cetirizine/Pseudoephedrine); etc.) - to relieve
allergy symptoms, such as red, itchy, watery eyes; nasal
etc., due to the increased levels of pollen, dust, mold,
etc., in the air. Note: Always consult your physician
before taking any medication, and use as directed.
Goals! Don’t overexert yourself, especially at an outdoor
get-together where the idea is to relax and have a good time.
Remember, as with most things in life, practice makes perfect!
So, if you’re really interested in a particular sport or
activity, practice it often, and you’ll be sure to impress your
friends and family at your next outdoor event.
Most of all...Have Fun! Whether you’re a competitive athlete or
an amateur, playing sports and exercising should be about
enjoying yourself, spending time with friends and family,
getting in touch with the great outdoors, teamwork, the spirit
of the game, stress-relief, and good health!
Handyman Zone Team