Foursquare Tournament Rules

Found in locations ranging from schoolyards to college campuses, foursquare is an outdoor game played by four players inside a square-shaped court. The goal is to bounce a ball back and forth within the court hoping to eliminate the other players if they miss the ball. The game can be played for fun or in a tournament setting with points being awarded to players based on their achievements within the game.


Foursquare can be played by a large number of players. Only four players are on the court at a given time while other players wait in the player line to be rotated in. Large tournaments can feature multiple foursquare courts.

Time Limit

Set a time limit for the tournament. Play continues through the time allotted with scheduled breaks if the tournament lasts for longer than an hour.

Court and Positions

Stand the referee outside of the court but facing it. Position four players on the foursquare court with one player in each of the four squares. From the perspective of the referee, the far left square is No. 4, the far right is No. 3, near left is No. 2 and near right is No. 1. Each square of the court should measure 8 feet by 8 feet for a total court size of 16 by 16 feet.

The Serve

The player in Square 4 serves an 8.5-inch inflated rubber ball from the back corner of his square to the player in Square 1. The server should let the ball drop and hit it with his hand on the up-bounce into Square 1. The player in Square 1 must hit the ball out of his square and into Square 2 or 3 in less than two bounces. Subsequent players can hit the ball into any other square on the court.


Players continue the game until one player misses the ball and lets it travel out of bounds or fails to hit it before the second bounce. That player is removed from the court and sent to the end of the player line. Anywhere outside the lines of the court is considered out of bounds. A ball landing on the boundary lines is still considered in play. If a ball lands out of bounds before hitting a square in the court, the hitting player is eliminated.

Shifting Squares

After a player is eliminated, all players in lower numbered squares move up one. For example, if the player in Square 3 is eliminated, then the player in Square 2 moves to Square 3, 1 goes to 2, and a new player from the player line fills Square 1.


There are two scores for a game of foursquare. The “Ent” score is based upon how many times a player enters the court in a game with one point awarded each time the player enters onto Square 1. The “Srv” score is the number of times a player serves from Square 4 with one point awarded for each serve. Divide the "Srv" score by the "Ent" score for the final average score. For example, if the player entered the game five times and served 15 times, his final score would be 15 divided by 5, or a score of 3.


The tournament winner is the player with the highest average score after the time limit has expired.