Official Rules for Texas Horseshoes
(also known as Polish, Redneck, or Hillbilly Horsehoes)
- The two washer boards should be placed on a flat surface 10 feet apart
from the front of the board. The included distance rope is exactly 10
feet long for easy distance measuring.
- The preferred surface to play on is short grass or carpet.
- During one-on-one competition, the first player will toss at a selected
board while the second person follows from the same spot. After tallying
scores, players will then pick up the washers thrown and throw to the
other board. During two-on-two competitions, teammates will stay at
the opposite board.
- Washers is a team game, each team will have a player situated at opposing
washer game board unless the game is one-on-one, in which please see
Section 3 under “Setup.”
- Each player must throw their respective washers with both feet on
the washer board. The foul line is the front of the board.
- The closest hole is worth one (1) point, the middle hole is worth
three (3) points, and the furthest hole is worth five (5) points. Washers
must drop into the hole completely to score. A thrown washer from either
player can knock washers on the board in a hole. It is important to
remember whose washers are on the board in case of a knock-in throw.
The owner of the knocked-in washer receives the applicable score for
the hole into which it was knocked.
- Each player has a turn to throw three washers in each round. During
one-on-one games, players will tally the score from that round and proceed
to throw back at the other board. During two-on-two games, after a round
is thrown and score is tallied, washers are then picked up and thrown
by the other set of opponents.
- After a player has thrown three washers for their turn, the other
player has the opportunity to cancel out the opponent's score.
- For example, if Player A throws a washer in the first hole for 1 point,
the middle hole for 3 points, and then misses the third shot, the score
would be 4 points for Player A. However, the opposition, Player B, has
a chance to cancel points from Player A's total during this round. If
Player B throws a washer in the first hole for 1 point and the last
hole for 5 points, and then misses the third shot, the score of the
first round would be 5 to 3 in favor of Player B because the washers
that landed in the first hole for one point cancelled each other out.
- The cancel rule is counted only for turns in the same round. Both
players must throw all their washers for a complete round.
- The player or team to score last (no matter if the throw is cancelled
or not) throws first in the next round.
- A round consists of a player making three washer throws in a row as
one turn, and then an opposing player making three washer throws in
a row as the second turn. Thus, a round consists of two turns.
- The skunk rule is in effect unless otherwise agreed upon by both teams
before a game begins.
- If a team outscores another team 11+to 0, then the team with zero
is SKUNKED (they lose). The team that outscores the other team 11+ to
0, wins the game.
- The first player or team to reach exactly twenty-one (21) points wins
- NOTE -- the round has to be complete and a player or team must reach
exactly 21 points to win the game. Breaking the 21-point level creates
a penalty situation (see section “Breaking 21 – Penalty”).
Breaking 21 - Penalty
- Exceeding the winning point total of 21 results in a reduction of
your starting score by the total number of points you made to break
- For example, if Player A has 18 points and throws a washer in the
last hole for 5 points, then misses two shots, they or their team will
go back to 13 points because the total number of points thrown during
that turn exceeded 21 points and the points scored (5) is subtracted
from the starting score (18) for that round.
- During each round, if opponents make a washer in the same hole, it's
just as if that washer was never thrown for both players. Scores are
tallied at the end of each player's turn, and then adjusted for cancels
at the end of the opponents turn. For example, if both players threw
a five in the previous example, the score for Player A or his team would
remain at 18 points.
These rules can be adjusted with any variation that you wish, but must
be agreed on before a game begins.
Build your own Texas Horseshoes (Hillbilly-Polish-Redneck
- (2) 2x4 x 10'
- (1) 4x8 5/8" plywood
- 14' of rope
- (6) Galvanized steel washers - 2.5" in diameter with a 1"
- Polyurethane sealer - select one for outdoor use...
- 1 1/2" decking screws
1. Measure & cut the following:
- (4) 3 foot boards
- (6) 15 inch boards
- (2) 3 foot x 18 inch plywood sheets
2. Create a frame by screwing two 3-foot and three 15-inch boards together.
The shorter boards are on the inside of the longer boards. Repeat for
3. Drill (2) 1/2" holes for the rope handle approximately 8 inches
apart on one long side of each frame.
4. Cut (2) 1-foot sections for rope handles. Insert rope end through
each hole, and tie knot on inside of frame to create handle. Repeat for
5. Use a framing square, and draw a line across the plywood at 8",
18", and 28". Then mark the middle of each of these lines (at
9" mark). Draw a 3" circle at each location, and cut with a
jig saw, or a 3" hole cutter drill bit if you are so fortunate...
6. Attach the plywood tops to the frames using deck screws.
7. Seal with 2-3 coats of polyurethane.
8. Screw one eye hook into top end of each frame. Attach end of rope
to each eye hook - this ensures exact spacing every time!