Shuffleboard – How to play, rules, tips and tricks

Tim Vickers

Shuffleboard is a board game that involves two or more players. Each player slides weighted pucks down a long, narrow, and smooth table to position them in high-scoring areas marked on the table.

You will be a winner or have a higher score if one of your pucks comes closer to the edge of the table. If you are new to the game, the most useful step is to understand the simple Shuffleboard rules.

Understanding the rules is the first step in knowing how to play the game. But if you already know the basics, you need to learn a few tips and tricks used by professionals for strategy and control.

How to play Shuffleboard

Shuffleboard is a simple game. Here is how to play a two-person game.

  • Stand with your opponent at the unmarked end of the board
  • Toss a coin or do paper rock scissors to pick who will go first
  • Each player should have at least four weights of the same color
  • The player that wins the coin toss should start by sliding one weighted puck towards the scoring end of the marked board
  • The opponent should also do the same

Players should continue shooting their weighted pucks alternately until they shuffle the eight weights.

Shuffleboard rules

The shuffleboard tournament rules are simple and straightforward, as detailed below:

  • Players must always alternate taking turns when sliding the weighted pucks by hand
  • Consider sliding your weights to the highest scoring area without going into the alley
  • If you want to earn points, your pucks must be the furthest down the shuffleboard than your opponent’s
  • You can knock off your opponent’s weights or outdistance them on the shuffleboard

Both players can play the game to either 15 or 21 points. A shuffleboard scorekeeper takes each player’s points.

Tips and tricks

Like other games, shuffleboard is a game of strategy. Here are simple tips and tricks to follow when playing.

  • Always give your weighted puck enough momentum to travel to the highest scoring zone. The drive should be enough to ensure it does not go over the board.
  • Avoid undershooting
  • Consider side-wheeling. It is whereby you shoot from one side of the board and use your fingers to guide the weighted puck. The goal is to have controlled shots that will be challenging for your opponent to knock off.
  • Always keep your pucks as close to the sides as possible without falling over
  • Always try to shoot last because it gives you a defensive advantage over your opponent

Keep an eye on your opponent’s strategy when playing the tabletop shuffleboard game. Identify when they try to overshoot or undershoot. That will allow you to focus on long and more controlled shots.

Ready to play Shuffleboard?

If you want to know how to win at the shuffleboard table, you must know where your pucks should land and how they will interact with those of your opponent.

Your primary goal should be to get your weights the furthest down the table. Also, blocking your opponent from scoring and knocking their pucks down are two excellent strategies to master.

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