Children and young athletes require modified rules to cater for their specific needs. Of particular concern with children is their underdeveloped sweat glands and poor ability to regulate body temperature. Children are also smaller and need to have activities and sports catered to their size.
Frequently the modified rules for children include modifications to ball sizes, field sizes, duration of competitions, smaller distances, and closer and smaller goals. These rule modifications help make participation in sports safer for the child and enhance their wellbeing. They give the children greater access to fluids, less distance to run, and balls that they can actually kick or headset without placing too much stress on their body.
Other rules are modified in order to enhance participation and enjoyment in the sport. Closer goals or hoops, make it easier for children to score goals and provide positive feedback to enhance enjoyment. Rule changes in cricket and modified games such as “Kanga Cricket” also enhance enjoyment by ensuring each child gets to face two (2) overs and also gets a chance to bowl.
Sports have their own specific modifications to rules to cater for children. For example, in rugby league, children under 15 are not allowed to tackle above the arm pits, or lift a ball carrier off the ground in a tackle. They are also not allowed to push or pull in a scrum. For further information on modified rules see rugby league laws of mini footy and mod league or the safety play code for Modball.