Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
from September 2014
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2011) 10, 1 - 8

Review article
Review of Rule Modification in Sport
Jose L. Arias1, , Francisco M. Argudo2, Jose I. Alonso3
Author Information
1 Catholic University of San Antonio, Murcia, Spain
2 Autonomous University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain
3 University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain

Jose L. Arias
✉ C/ La Labor n° 1, CP: 30520, Jumilla, Murcia, Spain.
Publish Date
Received: 13-09-2010
Accepted: 29-11-2010
Published (online): 01-03-2011
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The goal of this qualitative review was to analyze the state of the bibliography about rule modification in sport. In the literature reviewed, there are few studies of rule modification and related aspects. Most studies omit mentioning the purpose of the modifications, but they do refer to the goals of their analysis (improving players' performance, attracting spectators and athletes, attending to commercial pressure, adapting the sport to children’s needs and interests, preventing injuries). Eighty percent of the studies did not report the outcome of the previous modifications they analyzed. More than half of the studies (60%) achieved the proposed goals. Nearly two-thirds (63.83%) analyzed the effect of rule modification on game actions occurring during the game or through a test. Most of the studies (91.5%) did not consult the participants. Three-fourths of the studies (74.46%) examined the effect of rule modification without any knowledge of a previous analysis or without any previous analysis, and 74.47% studied rule modification related to internal logic. Modifications to be introduced in a sport should be analyzed through a reflective process before their final introduction. The following points should be considered: establishing goals, respecting the basic rules without modifying them, becoming familiar with players’ and coaches’ opinions, determining the effect of the modification on a wide spectrum of variables, elaborating useful proposals for the organizations that are responsible for competitions, using more than one type of data, modifying the internal logic and, preferably, the functional rules, and following some basic stages to consolidate rule modification.

Key words: Rule, game, game analysis, game action, economic interest, injury prevention

           Key Points
  • Rule modification involves processes that seek change in the game conditions with a certain goal in mind.
  • The rules related to internal logic model the game actions that are characteristic of a sport.
  • Functional rules facilitate achieving the goals.
  • There are few valid research studies on which to base the modifications.
  • Modifications in a sport should be validated after a reflective process before they are introduced.
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