Celtic Highland Games
of the Quad Cities

Throwing Rules

2815 West Locust Street, Davenport, Iowa

AD email: markjmcvey@yahoo.com

Athletic Home Page 

  • The throwing rules used will be the United Scottish Athletic Directors (USAD) rules. 
    Click here to read the 2008 USAD rules in PDF format  See below summary of the main differences between other rules.
  • Spinning will be allowed - I have the field size for spinning in the height events but I still have concerns for the safety of the other athletes as well as the audience. Most of us have seen a weight get away whether it be for a height or distance event.  Thus, if you are between your turns in the height events, please be aware of your surroundings.
  • Forks - For safety reasons, only Commercially manufactured forks will be allowed.  No homemade forks or forks with welded braces or tines are allowed.  The middle tine may be removed. 
  • Sheafs - A 10# bag will be used for women. A 16# bag will be used for Masters and 190s.  A 20# bag will be used for all others. QC Games uses Jason Cleveneger Sheafs.
  • The wearing of Kilt is required for all but first time throwers.
  • Kilt Hose and Flashes are required since throwing in a Highland Games is a celebration of Scottish/Celtic Heritage as well as an athletic event. This improves the athletic area within the Games committee; I appreciate the help and understanding of the throwers.   
  • USAD rules are similar to NASGA, RMSA, and Carlos Borges authored rules with the below differences.  I have included why USAD rules are different; these reasons are my own opinion and may not reflect the opinions of the others in USAD.   

    In Control - Not all rule sets have the "The competitor will complete the throw under control as decided by the judge or the throw will be ruled a foul." clause.  USAD rules does.  The minimum for under control is that your hands and feet can hit the ground, no other part of your body. Your judge may have a strictor/different  definition, don't be afraid to ask... this is nothing new, just clarifying the difference from other rule sets.

    Measurements has been
    taken from the center of the trig and not from the point on the trig closets to the plant foot.  If enough volunteers are obtained to be judges assistants, measurement will be done using a modified track and field method.  The tape will be pulled through the center of the box by the assistant and the judge reads the distance at the trig.  NO Sectors will be used.  If a throw is shanked to the side, and the judge cannot read the tape on the trig when it is pulled through the center of the box, the judge will read the tape from the corner of the trig.

    Ties will NOT be BROKEN in distance events.  This is not controversial until your in a tie. The reasons behind this rule are many fold: When ties are broken, the determining factor is no the competitors longest throw.  Another reason is that many games in Scotland, the longest throw for each competitor is marked with flags and only that throw is measured.  Thus, no tie breaking.

    Ties for height events will be broken based on the number of misses at the prior height.  When I tie involves passes, the pass will not help and or hurt the competitor. This basically means that if a height is involved in the tie-breaking and one of the competitor involved in the tie has passed at that height, that height will not be used to break the tie.

    Throwing boxes are painted so that the outside edge of the painted line is 4'6" apart. Stepping on the line is considered in, but stepping partially over the line is considered out.  Two consecutive steps outside of the box is considered a foot foul.  Additionally, stepping over the back line is also considered a foot foul.  

    This is not really a rule change but a matter of agreement on how the boxes would be painted on the ground.

    Cabers - Keeping a good Caber inventory is always tough.  There is the compromise of letting local throwers practice with them while worrying about breakage for the games.  I strive to have enough variety so that two cabers can be used for each throwing division. 

    Cabers will be done with a qualifer and a scoring caber.  Three tries at teh qualifier, if you can't turn it you don't move on to scoring caber.

  • If you have positive or negative input on these rules. Please provide them to a USAD Athletic Director.  The rule book is a living document and is reviewed each year.