Looking to perfect your cornhole game or quickly understand the cornhole rules before a backyard BBQ? Considered one of the fastest-growing games in America. In 2022, cornhole emerged as one of the most played sports in the United States, with a significant 20% of Americans participating in the game. This makes it one of the top three sports played in the country, along with bowling (19%) and swimming (18%). The popularity of cornhole varied across different demographics. For example, younger Americans (ages 18-34 and 35-54) and those with higher levels of income and education were more likely to have played the sport.

This comprehensive guide offers simple and easy-to-follow instructions on cornhole rules, gameplay, scoring system, and common fouls. Let’s dive right in and make you a cornhole master!

Key Takeaways

  • Cornhole is a popular and fast-growing game in America, played with two wooden boards and eight resin-filled bags.
  • The official rules of cornhole include positioning the boards 27 feet apart, taking turns throwing bags, and scoring points based on where the bags land.
  • Common fouls in cornhole include bags hitting the ground before landing on the board, bags touching the ground while on the board, and hanging bags resting on other bags, and stepping over the foul line.

Understanding Cornhole

To understand cornhole, it is important to familiarize yourself with the equipment – the boards and bags. The boards consist of two wooden platforms with a hole at one end, while the bags are filled with corn or synthetic materials.

 

The Cornhole Equipment

The foundation of a thrilling Cornhole game lies in its equipment. The critical pieces include two rectangular boards, each measuring 2′ x 4′, situated flat and facing each other at a distance of 27 feet.

These boards serve as targets with a hole that is six inches in diameter located nine inches from the top and centered width-wise. Alongside, you need eight resin-filled bags, precisely sewn into squares measuring six by six inches: four bags for each team, distinguished by two contrasting colors and roughly 15-16 oz each.

All these elements together create an exciting battlefield for both backyard BBQ fun and competitive tournaments!

The Cornhole Boards

Playing Cornhole begins with setting up the game equipment correctly. The perfect Cornhole boards stretch out 2′ x 4′ and are positioned 27 feet apart on a flat surface. This provides enough distance for a challenging yet enjoyable throw.

The construction of Cornhole boards plays a vital role in the game experience. High-quality, cabinet-grade plywood ensures a level playing field while allowing for smooth gameplay and accurate scoring.

The materials used can vary widely from unpainted wood to customizable, vinyl-wrapped versions sporting graduation themes, state flags, or just about any other design one can think of. With such unique designs, your cornhole set becomes more than just gaming equipment – it transforms into an expression of personal style during backyard BBQs or official tournaments alike!

The Cornhole Bags

Cornhole bags are central to a fun and exciting game of cornhole. Each team gets four bags, typically color-coded for easy identification. With dimensions set at 6 inches by 6 inches, each bag holds roughly one pound of resin.

At the beginning of every match, these eight vital pieces of the Cornhole game equipment all line up on one side, ready for skillful tossing and scoring action. They may look simple, but there’s no doubt that these are some important elements in any tournament or backyard BBQ showdown!

Official Rules for Playing Cornhole

To play cornhole, it is important to understand and follow the official rules. Here they are:

  • The cornhole boards should be placed 27 feet apart on a flat surface.
  • Each team consists of two players, who stand at opposite ends of the boards.
  • Singles can also be played with both players starting on the same side and switching ends after each round.
  • Players take turns throwing their cornhole bags towards the opposing board.
  • The game continues with alternating throws between the two opponents until all 8 cornhole bags have been thrown.
  • A bag that goes through the hole earns 3 points, while a bag that lands on the board without going in earns 1 point.
  • Bags that touch the ground before landing on the board or going through the hole do not count.
  • Points cancel each other out, so if one team scores 4 points and the other team scores 2 points in a round, only 2 points will be added to the leading team’s score.
  • The team with the highest round score adds the difference of the two scores to their game score.
  • Typically it’s a Race To 21 format with the winners being the first to reach 21. Scores can go over 21.

Cornhole Game Play

Set up your cornhole boards, grab your bags, and get ready for some intense gameplay! From the coin flip to scoring points, this section will guide you through all the rules and strategies of playing cornhole.

So lace up your shoes and let’s dive into the exciting world of cornhole!

Setup and starting the game

To set up and start a game of cornhole, follow these steps:

  1. Position the cornhole boards 27 feet apart on a flat surface.
  2. Make sure the surface of each board measures 2′ x 4′.
  3. Divide into two teams, with each team consisting of two partners.
  4. Each team should stand at opposite ends of the cornhole boards, facing each other.
  5. Place four cornhole bags of one color on one end and four bags of another color on the other end.
  6. Decide which team will have the first turn by any fair means, such as a coin toss or rock-paper-scissors.
  7. The team that wins the toss gets to choose the end they want to throw from.
  8. The team that did not win the toss goes first and throws all four of their bags.
  9. After their turn, it’s the other team’s turn to throw their bags.
  10. The game continues in this alternating fashion until all eight bags have been thrown.

Rules during gameplay

During gameplay, there are several rules that cornhole players should be aware of. Here are the key rules to keep in mind:

  1. The game starts with a coin flip or bag spin to determine which team will have the first throw.
  2. Each team takes turns throwing their cornhole bags toward the opposite board.
  3. Players must throw from behind the front edge of their own cornhole board.
  4. Alternating throws between opponents continue until all 8 cornhole bags have been thrown.
  5. Cornhole bags that land on the board earn 1 point, while bags that go through the hole earn 3 points.
  6. Bags that touch the ground before landing on the board do not count and should be removed from play.
  7. Players can only knock opponent’s bags off the board by throwing their own bags onto them.
  8. After each round, teams add up their scores and subtract the lower score from the higher score to get their round score.
  9. A “skunk” is declared if a team reaches or exceeds 21 points while their opponents have yet to score.

Scoring in Cornhole

Understanding how to score in Cornhole is crucial for anyone aiming to master the game. Below is a comprehensive guide to the different scoring situations in Cornhole.

Scoring Situation Points Earned
A bag goes through the hole 3 Points
A bag on the playing surface 1 point
A bag hanging into the hole 1 Point
A bag hanging off the edge but not touching the ground 1 point
A bag on the playing surface and touching the ground 0 points
A bag hanging off the front edge and resting on a bag on the ground 0 points, unless the bag on the ground can be removed without making the hanging bag fall to the ground
The team with the highest round score adds the difference of the two scores to their game score  

 

The rules for scoring in Cornhole are straightforward, and understanding them can greatly improve your game strategy and performance.

Common Fouls in Cornhole

Common fouls can occur during a game of cornhole, resulting in penalties or the removal of bags from the playing surface. It’s important to be aware of these fouls to ensure fair gameplay. Here are six common fouls in cornhole:

  1. Bag hitting the ground and bouncing onto the board: If a bag hits the ground first before bouncing onto the board, it is considered a foul and must be removed.
  2. Bag hitting the ground and then landing on the board: Similar to the first foul, if a bag hits the ground and then lands on the board, it is also considered a foul and must be removed.
  3. Bag touching the ground before landing on the board: When a bag touches the ground before landing on the board, it earns zero points and should be taken off the playing surface.
  4. Hanging bag resting on another bag: If a bag hangs off the front edge of the board and rests on another bag on the ground, it earns zero points unless removing that bag won’t cause the hanging bag to fall.
  5. Bag landing on playing surface while touching the ground: Any bag that lands on the playing surface but is also touching or partially touching the ground earns zero points.
  6. Fouls committed by one team: If one team commits a foul, such as stepping over a line or otherwise violating rules, their opponents have two options. They can either cancel out the foul and allow for a re-throw of missed bags or choose to let it stand and remove any bags affected by that foul.

Conclusion

Mastering the rules and gameplay of cornhole is important for any enthusiast. By understanding the equipment, official rules, scoring, and common fouls, you’ll be ready to dominate the game.

So grab your boards, gather your partners, and get ready for hours of fun with this classic backyard game. It’s time to become a cornhole pro!