Friday 23 July 2021
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Throwdown Rules and Scoring

Scoring is simple but needs helping hands from your participants or your audience. You will need to recruit volunteers for both judging and scribing. Judges need to be pretty familiar with the modern playboating moves, while the scribes simply need to take note. You will also need a timer who indicates when 10 seconds remain and the end of the ride. The competition will be held in either a hole riding format, or a “free riding” format, where boaters perform tricks as they move downstream through a rapid. Hole riding will take place in a round-robin, with each boater getting two or three rides, scored until they wash out of the hole, or up to 30 seconds. Free riding competitors will get one 90-second run through the rapid, from an eddy above across a set finish line. Any move performed within that time period in the current of the river will be scored. Moves performed in eddies will not be scored, although eddyline moves will be. A point penalty is assessed if the boater is late across the line. The decision of format for each event will be made that day, mostly based on water levels. Prizes are awarded every month through a raffle–all participants and volunteers are eligible. Scores will accumulate to determine series winners after the final event. Series champs get cool prizes and the all-powerful bragging rights.


Judging will be performed by competitors or volunteers, and consists of two components: technical and variety. For the technical scoring, volunteer technical judges will score all direction changes. It is best to recruit a scribe per judge to record the scores. The scoresheets are attached to this document.

Possible technical scores are:

  • 1 point for each 180-degree flat directional change in the hole
  • 2 points for each elevated (45 degrees or more) end
  • 4 points for each vertical (70 degrees or more) end (including loop ends)
  • Double points for each clean end
  • If a qualified volunteer variety judge is available, that judge will score variety once per trick according to a set score sheet. Sample
  • variety scores are:
  • Hole or wave
  • 10 points for cartwheel or blunt (45 degrees and more)
  • 15 points for splitwheel or backstab (45 degrees and more) or mystery move
  • 20 points for tricky wu, loop, space godzilla, sidekick or air blunt
  • 30 points for pan am, flipturn, or donkey flip
  • 40 points for helix


  • 10 points for rock spin, eddyline wheel, splatwheel, or wavewheel
  • 20 points for kickflip or macho move

Variety notes:

  • Moves can be scored in both directions, such as both left and right cartwheels, or front and back loops
  • Moves completed that result in a flush will still be scored
  • Splitwheel, tricky wu — one end must be vertical
  • Loop — no distinction is made for air loops
  • Sidekick, air blunt, pan am, flipturn, donkey flip, helix — separation from the water must be clean and full
  • If a qualified volunteer variety judge is NOT available for a particular class, the variety will be judged by each technical judge on a

1-10 scale

  • Variety point values will only be scored once per move per ride, and added directly to the technical scores.