Spikeball sees its debut on campus

Margaret Cecilio

Many people are itching to get out of their rooms and do something fun, but it can be difficult. Especially now with limited socializing and social distancing, various events can no longer be held. 
Students are searching for new forms of entertainment, and being outside and active is a great way to accomplish that. 
Spikeball games have been popping up all over campus, with anyone welcome to play.
Although the competition usually induces a good sweat, it’s a simple game that anyone can play. 
“I enjoy competing, but spikeball can also be a leisurely activity,” Dayne Millard, junior, said. Millard also enjoys using spikeball as a way to meet new people and bond with them. 
For first year students missing out on joining clubs and groups in person, spikeball could be a great way to socialize.
Spikeball is a mesh between volleyball and four square and is played between two teams of two. 
Teams have three hits to get the ball back onto the net that sits in between the two teams.
The company, based in Chicago, got its start in 2008, but it has recently gained popularity in the past couple of years. 
The roundnet and ball are easy to store, set up and break down, so it’s the perfect game for college students dealing with limited space. 
Michelle Quinn, junior and the Observer’s web editor, started playing Spikeball recently, when some friends asked her at the beginning of this school year. 
 “This was only my second time playing, but I really like it because it gets so competitive so fast,” Quinn said. 
She enjoys competing with friends and setting up their roundnet in the sand courts on campus. 
Spikeball is a great way to get outside for people like Jacob Brooks, sophomore, who enjoys going to a park to play when it’s nice out. 
Brooks first started playing spikeball in high school when he and his friends saw the company appear on the television show Shark Tank. 
Brooks talks about the versatility of spikeball. He says it “can be extremely competitive at times, but can also be lowkey.” 
The two on two game is played recreationally, however some schools have introduced it as a sport. 
Collegiate competitions are played between universities and colleges who face off in tournaments, which leads to a world championship. The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and the University of Texas at Dallas have spikeball teams.
With collegiate level teams and wide recreational use, spikeball is becoming increasingly popular.
“I love being able to rely on my teammate and knowing that both of us are going to do whatever needs to be done to score, whether that be diving across the sand or running into another player. It is a fast pace game that really gets you going,” Quinn said. 
For those who already know and love the game, try out a few different spins such as playing in the dark while decked out in glow sticks and a glow in the dark ball.
 Add modifications to spruce up the rules, like the backhanded rule where you can only use the back sides of your hands to hit the ball. Add your own rules, or check out the Spikeball website for  inspiration.