Toronto Touch Rugby: a friendly alternative to getting tackled

Toronto’s newest social co-ed sport is for softies and warriors alike

The only way you could get injured here is if you trip over yourself.

Touch rugby coach Ken Stone

Touch rugby is rugby — only for people not about getting beaten up. Know simply as “Touch,” touch rugby is one of the fastest growing team sports in the world.

Which kind of makes sense…Touch originated when athletes in rugby leagues would utilize non-contact variations of the sport for warm-up and training activities. The fact that touch rugby is more “no touchy” than regular rugby means it functions particularly well as an inclusive, co-ed sport. All contact is minimal force so no David vs. Goliath antics occur.

NO tackling, line outs, scrumming, mauling or kicking is allowed, especially mauling. The sport emphasizes running, agility, ball-handling, and communication. Effective game strategies and style of play are also markedly different in comparison to contact rugby. Not only does the elimination of the contact decrease the possibility of injury, it allows players to focus on developing their skills — skills that can be transferred to other sports.

Game Format & Equipment Needs

Touch is a fast, evasive, and safe non-contact sport played by 6 players a side (maximum of 14 players on a team).

**Add something about positioning, that is relatable to other sports (i.e., defenders, midfielders)**

Games are played outdoors on grass or turf fields. The sport uses an official touch-sized rugby ball on a pitch area of 50m x 70m (this is comparable to a house league sized soccer field). In Toronto, Touch games take place at Riverdale Park East on Sunday (the one by the Don Valley with the immaculate views).

Dust off those soccer cleats, which are now your multi-purpose sport shoes. Leagues usually provide uniforms and your only equipment needs are cleats that aren’t screw-in.

Non-Touchy Subject — Get Fit:

  1. Players may interchange from the side of the field as often as they wish (big bonus for lazy people/those who come out for the beer). **(unlimited substitutions???)**
  2. You can burn up to 610 calories per hour (or about three pints) playing Touch.
  3. On average, players work at 80% of their maximum heart rate in a Touch Rugby League game.

Leagues, Seasonal Play & PickUp

Currently, touch is classified as an informal social sport. There are informal social pickup games as well as serious organized leagues. ​There are several different touch rugby organizations throughout the GTA but Toronto Touch Rugby (TTR) is the only co-ed one that focuses on learning to play.

The TTR’s official season begins in January and runs until early April with two hour training sessions **PER WEEK? so is there one games and one practice per week**?. It includes basic and intermediate training for new and intermediate players. If you are not interested in committing to the league, you can find or organize a pickup game using the OpenSports app.

Toronto Touch Rugby’s winter session is currently at full capacity. Visit their website for upcoming sessions, leagues, and tournaments (both domestic and away) or for more information reach out to

Toronto Touch Rugby is affiliated with Touch Canada. Both bodies are passionate about growing the love of the sport! Like TTR’s Facebook page or follow them on Twitter @touchrugby_TO or Instagram @touchrugby_toronto.

Make sure you keep up to date about Touch try outs and more pickup and organized sports opportunities at

Happy Sports Playing!

Your friends and OpenSports