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Disclaimer: Beirut (beer pong) can be played with alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages, or no beverage at all. If you choose to play beirut (beer pong) with alcoholic beverages, you should be of legal drinking age and drink responsibly.


Rules - Shot Line


Beirut (beer pong) tables and players vary widely in length and physical attributes, yet rules routinely dictate that the shooting area shall be based on these factors. This article proposes a new system of defining the shooting area based on a "Shot Line".

Shot Line

Bone of Contention

As stated previously, beirut (beer pong) tables and players vary widely in length and physical attributes. This has lead to the creation of special provisional rules to prohibit leaning over the table, which is perceived by many as an unfair advantage. Examples of these rules summarily include: no player contact with the table, a player\'s elbow must remain behind the end of the table prior to release, the ball must be released from a point behind the end of the table.

However, most beirut (beer pong) games are not refereed by an unbiased official; contention of shot legality is decided by committee of the participants in a game. It is extremely difficult for defending players to accurately determine if a shooting player is in violation of one of these rules. In fact, due to the angles of line of sight, most shooting players appear to be close to, or over, the end of the table when shooting. Even if an official is available to determine shot legality, players will be distracted by having to alter their arm movement while shooting.

Also, players of above average height and reach are unfairly handicapped based on this approach. The rules governing the majority of sports do not make exceptions and handicaps based on the attributes of the participants. Rules are only altered in the case of leagues and classes of competition (e.g. boxing weight classes, men or women only leagues). If players are competing in the same beirut (beer pong) game, then the rules of play should not give an advantage or handicap any player. Any natural advantage that a player possesses should be maintained.

A Step in the Right Direction

The intuitive adjustment made by players competing with leaning rules is to adjust the position of their feet while shooting. By moving their feet a half step or more away from the table\'s end, they may use their natural arm movement while shooting. Players create a mental line, behind which they position their feet prior to taking shooting form.

Due to this natural compensation, it becomes apparent that a more convenient equalizer would be to define a line behind which players must remain to execute a legal shot. This "Shot Line" has the added advantage of being easily recognizable from the opposite end of the table. The shot line could also standardize the dimensions of the beirut (beer pong) shooting area, by defining an exact distance from the cups to shooting area.

The proposed standard shot line is 8\' 8" from the back of the initial setup of cups. This distance is based on the official length of a table tennis table (9\'), minus the recommended separation of the cups from the end of the table (4").

Shot Line Rules

For those that would like to use the shot line definition of the shooting line, substitute the following rules.

  6  The Shooting Area
6.1  Definition [Variation]
The shooting area shall be the area from which legal shots must be attempted. The shot line shall be a line projected from above the end of the table onto the ground. The shooting area shall consist of a rectangle projected from the shot line and enclosed on either side by lines extended collinearly from the sides of the table. A player is deemed inside the shooting area when at least one foot is within the designated rectangle and all portions of the player's body are behind or above the the shot line with no portion of the player's body in contact with the table or objects on the surface of the table.
6.2  Irregular Tables [Variation]
If a non-standard table has been substituted, the the shot line shall be a line 8' 8" from and parallel to the back of the initial setup of cups.

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Disclaimer: Beirut (beer pong) can be played with alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages, or no beverage at all. If you choose to play beirut (beer pong) with alcoholic beverages, you should be of legal drinking age and drink responsibly.