FAQs

Do I have to know how to ride?

Nope, we can teach you how to ride while learning the sport. Generally non-riders are playing within a 5-10 lessons, depending on their ability.

Can anyone come out and watch polo?

Yes, we have several seating options. You can watch from out corner bleachers, or our stadium deck seating. You can also pull your pickup up to the arena and tailgate. Some people enjoy standing and watching from the ground.

Do you have horse boarding available?

Yes, we do! We offer stalls, paddocks, pastures and corrals. Its a great place to turn out your horses for the season, or board and play with us!

Do I have to own a horse?

No, the Central Coast Polo Club offers horses for lessons and polo chukkars

I am not sure where I/my son/daughter fit in the programs?

Well no worries… just give me a call, I am usually always available to answer questions. Megan 805-801-9410

Polo Rules

Each polo match consists of 4 to 6 chukkers (periods) that last seven and a half minutes with a warning bell at seven minutes and a final bell thirty seconds later (unless a team scores after the warning bell which stops the chukker immediately). The game is played on a field with goal posts on each end. The players try to hit the ball between the posts (no matter how high), to score one point. After each goal, the teams change sides. Two mounted umpires accompany the players, (four on each team in outdoor polo, three on each team in arena polo) and a “third man” sits near the middle of the field to referee in case of a disagreement between the mounted umpires. The whistle is blown to indicate a foul (scroll down to learn more about fouls), and stops the clock. At the end of the chukker, the players change horses.

 

THE PLAYERS

Each team consist of four players.

  1. An offensive player
  2. The offensive midfielder
  3. The pivot, often the highest rated player
  4. The defensive back Each player is expected to cover his/her man (or woman) who is the numerical opposite on the field.

Note: In arena polo, each team consists of three players.

 

POLO PONIES

The horses traditionally called ponies, are well trained equine athletes. Able to stop and turn on a dime, they are considered faster than racehorses over short distances. Polo ponies are the most essential part of the game.

 

HANDICAPS

“A polo handicap is your passport to the world.” – Sir Winston Churchill In polo, a handicap is required and considered a good thing. Players are rated from minus two to ten. Ten is the best. Each team’s handicap is the sum of the players’ handicaps. In an Open tournament, teams play “on the flat” meaning that no scoring advantage is given to the weaker team. In a handicap tournament, points are given to the weaker team based on the difference of handicaps between two teams. For example, if a sixteen goal (handicap) team plays against a seventeen goal (handicap) team, then one point is awarded on the scoreboard for the sixteen goal team at the start of the match.

 

FOULS

To the layman, fouls in polo are very hard to see. Even professionals have a hard time, but one can usually tell a foul by listening to the players after the whistle blows. A foul is basically a dangerous play, mostly stemming from crossing in front of the man with the ball. When the ball is hit, it creates an invisible line and the players must follow it as if they are driving on a make-believe road. Each time the ball changes direction, the road changes as well. Penalty shots are awarded depending on where the foul was committed, or upon the severity of the foul. Lines on the field indicate where midfield, sixty, forty and thirty yard penalties are taken from. If the ball is hit past the back line by a defending player, a sixty-yard shot facing the spot where the ball went across the line is awarded.

 

POLO PONY LINGO

Polo Pony

A horse or pony used for polo. Can be of any breed, color, size or gender according to a players preference.

 

Polo Prospect

A young horse that has not yet started any polo training. A majority of prospects are purchased after their racing careers at 2-4 years old. Prospects can also be found doing other equestrian sports such as reining, roping and pleasure riding.

 

Groom A person in charge of the day to daycare of a polo horse or string of horses. Top grooms travel with the ponies from state to state and around the world during the polo seasons.

 

Stick n’ Ball

When players practice their hitting skills and/or train their horses outside of a game situation, usually on a Stick n’ Ball or practice field.

 

String

A term used to describe the group of horses used or owned by a player in a game, tournament or season. Strings usually range from 1 to 12 horses depending on the handicap level of polo being played.