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Below is a list of Arenex and NWBHL amendments. 

The following rules and amendments are new, unique to the NWBHL or often misinterpreted by players

(all other rules generally follow CBHA rules adapted for gym hockey)

Part 1- General Game Rules

Part 2- Penalties/Suspensions

Part 3- Roster/Qualification Rules

Part 4- Equipment Rules

Part 5- Playoff Rules/TieBreakers

Part 6- Forfeits/Reschedules


Part 1 - General Game Rules

Time and Clock Rules.

Games consist of two 20 minute periods. Play will be running time until the last 1 minute of the 1st period and 3 minutes of the second period (unless there is 5 goal margin or greater). The clock will also be stopped on the call of a penalty, a timeout, or at the referee's request.


Teams will be permitted one 30 second timeout per half. A team may use it's second half timeout in overtime if it is still available. During the playoffs, teams will be given a timeout for each additional 20 minute overtime period. Any team calling a timeout when it has already been used will be given a delay-of-game penalty.

Mercy Rule.

The game will end when the score reaches a 10 goal margin in the second half of play, at which time the buzzer will be sounded. If the score differential reaches a number greater than ten in the first period, play will continue until the conclusion of that period but the second half will not be started. Teams will be allowed to remain on the floor to take advantage of the floor time until the end of their hour if they wish to do so.

Additionally, the clock will continue to run during the last three minutes of the second half if the score differential is 5 or more (It will still be stopped for a penalty call, however).

In-Game Roster Violation.

It is the responsibility of each team to fill out their own roster PRIOR to a game. Adjustments can be made at half-time. If the game sheet is not correctly filled out by the beginning of the second period, the clock buzzer will sound at the first stoppage of play and a captain must come to the timekeeper area and correct the score sheet. A bench minor penalty will be issued for delay of game.


Start of Period, after a goal or referee error – center floor.

Ball out of bounds – where the original shot was taken unless saved by the goalie and deflected out of bounds.

Saved by goalie and frozen or deflected out of bounds – To right or left of goalie in Goalie’s defending zone.

When a penalty is called – in the offending teams defensive zone to the right or left of goalie.

Crease Violation – On the blue circles outside the zone

Because of running time during portions of the game teams have 10 seconds to have a player ready for a face-off, referees will give a three second warning to players if they are not ready and drop the ball. Alternately, the referee has the right to stop the clock if a team is intentionally delaying the game, abuse of delaying the game shall result in a bench minor being assessed.

Start of Game.

Teams will be permitted a seven minute warm-up commencing at the time the game is officially scheduled.

If a team is not prepared to start the game by the time the referee blows the game in, they will be given an additional five minutes, but that team will lose their first half time-out, and receive a delay of game penalty. If the team is still not prepared to play after the additional five minutes, the game shall be forfeited to the other team.

Tied Game.

If in the regular season at the end of regulation the game is tied in score, then both teams will line-up immediately (no break) for a 3 minute stop time overtime period. If at the end of the 3 minutes the game remains tied, the game will be recognized as a tie.

A team winning in overtime is awarded 2 points in the standings for a victory and the team losing is awarded 0 points. A tie is a single point each.

If in the playoffs, teams will be given a 2 minute break and continue with regular playing time 20 minutes until one team scores.

Crease Rule.

Any opposition player that steps into the blue paint of the crease (This also includes cutting through the crease) will bring about a stoppage in play and the face-off will be moved out of the zone. The player will not have to serve a penalty unless he makes contact with the goaltender which will again be dependent on his effort to avoid contact.

Players are allowed to enter the crease AFTER the ball has, in order to score, just not before.

You are not allowed to push a player into your own crease to bring about a stoppage in play for a crease violation. If this happens and the ball enters the net it shall be considered a legal goal.

Hand Passes.

Hand passes that are parallel or backwards in the defensive zone only are permitted.

Ball Out of Bounds or Unplayable.

Ball shall be considered out of bounds if it exits the playing surface into one of the players benches, penalty benches or any viewing area, also any part above the finished paneling on the wall or if the ball makes contact with the rafters or the basketball hoops over the goal nets or the air conditioning unit over the goal net. Face-off shall occur at the last place the ball was touched unless otherwise stated in the rules.

A delay of game penalty shall be assessed any player who deliberately shoots, bats or throws the ball out bounds. Face-off shall be in the offending teams defensive zone. If a team is already short-handed when they are assessed a delay-of-game penalty, a penalty shot will be assessed instead of a minor.

If the ball is shot on the back of the net and come off without delay, or is able to be retrieved by a single player without obstruction play shall continue. Otherwise the play shall be stopped, and the face-off shall occur at the location of where the ball came from to land on the netting.

Ball Must Be Kept in Motion.

A team in possession of the ball in its defending zone shall always advance the ball towards the opposing goal, except if prevented by the opposing team. Violation of this rule will result in a face-off in the defending zone of the offending team.

A minor penalty shall be assessed any player who deliberately holds the ball against the boards or any part of the goal in any manner, unless he is being checked by an opponent. If the offending player's team is shorthanded at the time, a penalty shot will be assessed instead of a minor.


If for whatever reason the referee(s) appointed are unable to perform their duties, the managers of the competing teams shall meet with the referee or highest ranking off-floor official available and determine the best route of action. If another referee(s) is/are available that both teams agree to that shall be the first choice, playing the game with one impartial official shall be the second choice, third is to find one or two knowledgeable non-referees to referee the game. Fourth is to have one player from each competing to referee the game. If the appointed referee(s) arrive late they shall replace the non-appointed referee unless the non-appointed referee is a qualified referee.


A scorekeeper is provided by the league and will record the goals, assists, penalties, shots, etc. In order for stoppage of the clock or a time out, players MUST direct their request to the referees, NOT THE SCOREKEEPER. The scorekeeper will not stop the clock unless directed to do so by the referee, or when extenuating circumstances occurs.

Part 2 - Penalties/Suspensions

Captains and Alternate Captains.

When a Captain or Alternate receives a penalty he shall lose all his privileges for the duration of the penalty and must proceed directly to the penalty box. Such players not doing so will be assessed a Misconduct Penalty.

Coincidental Minor Penalties.

Players serving coincidental penalties may only leave the penalty box once a whistle has stopped play after the expiration of their penalty. Coincidental penalties that are issued to a player who is ejected from the game need not be served by any player from the offending team.

Major Penalties.

If the player is ejected from the game as the result of a major penalty, and it is a time penalty, the offending team, only need to place a player in the penalty box prior to the expiration of the penalty. This must be done during a stoppage of play and not delay the game in any manner. Failure to place a player in the penalty box prior to expiration of the major penalty will result in the offending team remaining a man short until the next stoppage of play after the expiration of the penalty. The offending team may place a player in the box immediately upon receiving the penalty if they so choose.

Goaltender Penalties.

No goaltender shall be sent to the penalty box for an infraction that results in a minor or misconduct penalty. Instead, said penalty shall be served by another player whom was on the floor at the time of the infraction.

If a goaltender is ejected from the game, the team will have ten minutes to dress a new goalie, no warm-up will be allowed. If an alternate goalie is dressed he must step in immediately to replace the other goalie.

Delayed Penalties.

Penalties called will be in accordance with the delayed penalties rule. (upon transfer of possession, or when the official deems it prudent)

High Sticks.

Making contact with the ball above normal height of the shoulders is prohibited and a minor penalty shall be assessed. A minor penalty may also be assessed if you are swinging your stick above the normal shoulder height in a crowd or near another player.

The carrying of sticks above the normal height of the shoulder of an opponent is prohibited, a minor penalty or a major and a game misconduct shall be assessed to any player who checks or intimidates an opponent while carrying his stick above the normal height of the shoulders of his opponent, if injury results a game misconduct shall be assessed.

Handling the Ball.

Play shall be stopped immediately and a minor penalty assessed to any player, except the goaltender who closes his hand on the ball and gains an advantage against his opponents. If the player drops the ball immediately without attempting to gain an advantage play shall continue and no penalty shall be assessed.

A minor penalty shall be assessed a goaltender who deliberately holds the ball and in the opinion of the referee causes an unnecessary delay. Where a goaltender throws the ball towards the opponents net and an opponent receives the ball play shall continue, where a teammate receives the ball play shall be stopped.

A minor penalty shall be assessed any player, except the goaltender, who, while play in progress picks up the ball with his hand. If this happens in the defending crease then a penalty shot shall be awarded.

The ball may not be batted into the net with the hand or arm and cannot deflect of any other attacking and into the net after being batted by the hand or arm. Defending team must gain possession of the ball before the attacking team could score.

Too Many Men.

If in the course of making a substitution the player leaving or entering the playing surface intentionally plays the ball or makes contact with an opposing player while still on the floor “too many players” shall be called.

Falling on the Ball.

A minor penalty shall be assessed to any player who deliberately falls on, gathers, covers the ball by any means of his body.

A minor penalty shall be assessed to any goaltender, while outside his crease, who deliberately falls on, gathers, covers the ball by any means of his body, thus delaying the game unnecessarily (this does not apply if the goalie is out to cover the angle on shot, makes the save and covers the ball.)

A penalty shot shall be awarded when a defending player who deliberately falls on, gathers, covers the ball by any means of his body or picks up the ball within his goal crease.


A minor, or major and a game misconduct at the discretion of the referee, penalty shall be assessed to any player who jumps or charges (more than two steps) into an opponent. If injury results a major and a game misconduct shall be assessed.

A major shall be assessed if the above infraction occurs from behind.

A goaltender is NOT "fair game" just because he is outside the goal crease area. A penalty for interference or charging shall be called for any unnecessary contact made with a goaltender.

Checking from Behind.

A minor and a game misconduct or major and a game misconduct based on the degree of violence of the impact shall be assessed to any player who intentionally pushes, body checks, or hits an opposing player from behind, anywhere on the floor. Where a player is injured a major and game misconduct shall be assessed. A match penalty can also be assessed under this rule.

b. Where a player is high sticked, cross-checked, body checked, pushed, hit, or propelled in any manner from behind or into the boards or goal net, in such a way that the player is unable to defend himself, a match penalty shall be assessed.


Fighting is prohibited. Any players assessed a fighting major shall be given a two game suspension and $20 fine.

When a fight occurs all other players are to return to the front of their players bench or a neutral zone if the fight is in front of the players bench, failure to do so will result in a misconduct.

It should be noted that just one player can be issued a fight, but when this happens, third players entering that fight shall be issued Game misconducts, even if they are acting as “peacemakers”.

Player Ejection.

If a player is ejected from the game he must either leave the building, or go to the dressing room. He may not stay in the lobby area or participate in the handshake at the end of the game. No player under suspension may participate in the pre-game warm-up, or be able to be on the bench. The manager or coach shall be responsible for the conduct of their players at all times.

Game Ejection/Washed Goals.

The onus will be on the player/team to recognize if he should be ejected from the game, therefore, if a player should have been ejected from the game under the three penalty rule, game ejection, 2 misconducts or game misconduct any goal scored or assisted by said player shall not count if it is brought to the attention of the referee while the game is still under progress.

Fines/Suspension Guidelines.

Any combination of three penalties during the course of one game will result in a game ejection (does not apply to goalies) and be penalized with a $10 (does apply to goalies). A Misconduct or Game Ejection in the last 5 minutes of regular time or any time in overtime will automatically be penalized with a minimum of a $10 fine.

The Guideline for Suspensions are as follows: Game Misconduct 1 Game +$10 fine, Gross Misconduct 2 games +$20, Match Penalties 3 Games +$30. These are only guidelines and the actual suspensions and fines may differ on a case by case basis.

The league president may use the services of video review during the suspension or appeals process.

Teams are responsible for all fines given to their players. An individual player is not permitted to play another game until his fine has been paid in FULL.

Appeal Process (for fines and suspensions).

    1. One Game Suspensions and $10 fines can not be appealed.

    2. Place a $50 bond with the league, citing the game, date, players involved and description of events.

    3. The league will then convene a 3 man jury of managers, excluding the teams that were involved and one other if the team applying for the appeal so chooses and one other from the team defending the appeal if they so choose.

    4. A hearing will take place and a majority vote will decide if the suspension shall be changed.

    5. If the suspension was changed then the $50 bond shall be returned.

    6. The jury of managers decision shall be final

Fan Behavior.

If any fans from the participating teams act in an unfashionable matter, the team may receive an unsportsmanlike penalty. If the fans continue to act unruly they will be asked to leave the building. If the fans behavior continues to escalate the game will stop until the fans leave. If they refuse to leave, the fans team will forfeit the game.

Part 3 - Roster/Qualification Rules

Waiver Form.

Players who haven't signed a waiver form that is on file with the league (check the website for the “Y” in the waiver column) must sign the waiver form before the start of their first game. It is the team captain or coach's responsibility to make sure that new players sign the waiver form or a fine will be implemented.

Emergency Goaltender Rule.

Teams may bring a goaltender not on their roster in the case of an emergency. If that is not possible, teams may use a goaltender on another team's roster one time only and in the regular season only.

Player Minimum and Maximum.

Each team may have a maximum of 18 players and 2 goaltenders. All players for any game or pre-game warm-up must be registered with the league. A minimum of 6 eligible players in uniform (excluding the goaltender) on each team shall be necessary to start the game.

A team may play with 5 players if they are waived in to do so by the opposing team.

Player Qualifications for playoffs.

A player must play 6 games during the 18 game Fall season or 4 games during the 12 game Spring season in order to qualify for the playoffs. A goaltender must play 2 games during the 18 game Fall season or one game during the 12 game Spring season in order to qualify for the playoffs. If a player is unable to play due to injury, he must be on the bench in a numbered jersey with his number on the gamesheet for a minimum of half of the game to receive a game credit.

In order to qualify, all players must be on the team roster before the roster deadline. In the event of a discrepancy, the game sheet will determine the amount of games a player has played.

Roster Deadline

Teams may add as many different players to their roster as they wish before the league roster deadline. At the deadline they must name the final 25 players that they will use for the duration of the season, and then must only dress players on that list the rest of the way.

Player Transaction Rules.

If a player has played a game with a team, he becomes that team's property for the duration of that season. If that player wishes to play for another team, he has to ask his current team for permission before signing with another. If the team does not grant him permission, he is unable to play for any other team until the season officially ends.

A player that leaves one team to join another, cannot rejoin his original team for the remainder of the season.

Any games you play with one team before moving onto another still count towards your playoff qualification, even if it is for a different division.

Part 4 - Equipment Rules

Official Game Ball.

The official game ball of the NWBHL is the D-Gel ball.


All the players MUST wear identically coloured uniforms, all of which must be longed sleeved. Jersey patterns cannot be dramatically different. Sleeves may not be rolled up over the elbow.

All team members must be identified by a number on their jersey. No taped numbers are allowed. One non-numbered jersey of similar colour and design will be allowed per team per game, player will be designated as “0” and this cannot be an ongoing issue.

Team captain and alternate captain(s) must be identified by a "C" or "A" on their jersey or the ref will decide who the team captain and alternates are.

All teams must designate a jersey colour prior to the start of each season.

The VISITING TEAM (as per the schedule) is responsible for any changing of jerseys if there is a colour conflict with another team. There is a spare set of white jerseys available for rental from the league for $20.

Uniforms must be in good condition.

Goalies are permitted to wear jerseys different from their team but cannot wear a jersey whose predominant colour is the same as the other team.

Protective Equipment.

Players must have their own gloves and helmets. Players cannot exchange gloves or other equipment. Players without full equipment are not eligible to play in the game. The referee is empowered to make a call regarding illegal use of equipment.

All protective equipment, except gloves, head gear, soft knee pads or goaltenders leg pads, must be worn entirely under uniform (see below for exemptions). Minor penalties shall be imposed for those in violation of this rule.

The use of protective hockey gloves is mandatory. Zebra gloves are permitted. Lacrosse gloves are not permitted.

The use of palmless gloves are not permitted. After one warning a minor penalty will be imposed for this rule.

The chin strap must not be hanging loosely on a player's helmet.

Hard and Soft shell D-Gel shin pads are permitted to be worn on the outside of socks. All other knee pads that extended down the shin must be worn inside the pants or under socks (covered).

Jerseys must be long sleeved, and may not be rolled or pushed up over the elbows.

Elbow pads which do not have sponge or rubber material at least a ½” thick shall be considered dangerous equipment.

Goaltender’s Equipment.

With the exception of shoes and stick, all the equipment worn by a goaltender must be constructed solely for the purpose of protection of head and body. Abdominal aprons extending down the thighs outside the pants are prohibited. Width of a blocker shall not exceed 8 inches at any point and 16 inches in height. The base of a catching glove shall not exceed 9 inches, and the length shall not exceed 16 inches. The maximum circumference shall not exceed 48 inches. The only pocket permitted on the glove is the one between the thumb and forefinger and shall not contain any unnecessary material to make it larger than necessary. Goaltenders pads shall not exceed 14" in extreme width as measured on the goaltender. A minor penalty shall be assessed to any goaltender using or wearing illegal equipment. Mandatory equipment for a goaltender is as follows: chest protector, leg pads, goaltender's stick, CSA approved helmet and facemask for goaltenders, gloves (consisting of both blocker and trapper).

Illegal Goalie Equipment.

If a goalie is caught with illegal equipment he will have a two-week grace period to buy new equipment.

Part 5 - Playoff Rules/Tie-Breakers

General Playoff Rules.

All playoff series will be best of three. The higher seed shall be designated the home team for games 1 and 3.

Playoff Tie Breaking Rules.

Playoff seedings will be determined by the following procedures if a tie between two teams:

    1. Most Wins (Overall)

    2. Head to Head (Most points)

    3. Goal differential (Head to Head)

    4. Goal differential (Overall)

    5. Most Goals (Overall)

    6. Coin toss

Playoff seedings will be determined by the following procedures if a tie between three or more teams:

    1. Most Wins

    2. Goal Differential (Overall)

    3. Best winning % Head to Head of all teams that are tied

    4. Best Goal differential per game on Head to Head games between all teams tied

    5. Most Goals (Overall)

    6. Coin toss

Part 6 - Forfeits/Reschedules

Forfeit Games.

    1st fofeit; $100 fine and -1pt,

    2nd forfeit; $100 fine and -1pt,

    3rd forfeit; ejection

Teams at the winning end of a forfeit will receive $50 of the forfeit fee and all players on their current roster shall receive a game credit.

Reschedule Process.

    1. To reschedule a game you must contact the president of the league

    2. A $100 administration fee will be charged.

    3. Within 10 days of the scheduled date the opposing team must agree to the rescheduling

    4. No reschedule within 72 hours under any circumstances

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