Think back to your favorite activity in gym class.
No, not the one with the giant, colorful parachute.
We’re talking, of course, about dodgeball.
Dodgeball is an intensely competitive game of skill, elusiveness, and a little bit of luck. And while it used to be played routinely in schools across the country, it’s becoming less and less of a staple among youngsters due to a variety of different factors.
However, that doesn’t mean the game has gone away completely. In fact, in many ways it’s growing even bigger and better than ever before. Indoor trampoline parks have become the ideal arena for exciting, high-flying dodgeball games the likes of which the game’s founding fathers never could have envisioned.
At Rebounderz in Grand Rapids, our facility features a state-of-the art battleground that is perfect for a brand new twist on the game known as “Air Dodgeball.”
The basic rules of the game are very similar, though you’ll obviously add a lot more bounce to your dodging, ducking, dipping, and diving. In this blog, we’ll be giving you a rundown about all things Air Dodgeball, from the rules to the safety precautions to the growth of the game itself. We’ll also leave you with a few tips and tactics that you can use the next time you head to a Rebounderz trampoline park nearest you.
Let’s dive (and dodge, and dip, and duck) right in, shall we?
Basic Dodgeball Rules
For starters, let’s take a glance at some of the very basic rules when it comes to dodgeball, whether you’re playing on the ground or in the air. Of course, you will start with two distinct teams, though the amount of people on each team will vary based upon your particular group. It could be as little as two-on-two, or it could be full on mayhem with 10-vs-10. The choice is yours, and the more people you have the funner the game tends to be.
Much like with all team sports, sportsmanship and honor are heavily encouraged. As are communication, fitness, strategy, and of course teamwork.
In order to win the game, your team has to have the last man standing, so to speak. That means you have eliminated all of the opposing team’s players by either pegging them with the ball or catching their throw attempts.
Here are a few more rules and guidelines to keep in mind:
- Usually, three to five balls will be placed in the middle of the arena. The game starts with a whistle and a full sprint to retrieve the balls for your team.
- The teams are separated by a “neutral zone,” a line which divides the court in half. Players are not permitted to cross the neutral zone to retrieve balls or attack the opposing team. They can, however, perform what’s known as a “sacrifice fly,” in which they leap from their side to the other side in order to perform an attack. As long as their ball hits the opposing player before they land, the player who was struck will be out. However, once the sacrificing player lands on the other side of the neutral zone, they too will be out.
- A player is considered “out” if they are hit by a ball thrown by the opposing team, given that ball is not caught before it hits the ground.
- If a ball is caught by the opposing team, one of that team’s players is permitted to re-enter the arena if they have previously been knocked out.
- For safety and sportsmanship purposes, headshots are generally discouraged and may result in a disqualification.
- You are allowed to block another ball with a ball in your hands, given that you don’t drop that ball or get hit anywhere on your body by that ball.
- There should be some sort of a “shot clock” imposed to discourage players from holding onto a ball for longer than 10 seconds.
- Kicking the dodgeball is not allowed.
- When playing at one of our many Rebounderz trampoline parks, such as our Grand Rapids location, bouncing off the walls is thoroughly encouraged!
- And the most important rule of all: you must have fun while playing dodgeball.
When it comes to safety, you should be attentive and aware of your surroundings at all times. Furthermore, as dodgeball is a high-speed, high flying game that can be played at trampoline parks, you must be sure you fill out and sign your liability waiver before you step foot on the trampolines. You can learn more about the general safety precautions we take at Rebounderz here.
The Growth Of Air Dodgeball
Air Dodgeball, otherwise known as dodgeball played at indoor trampoline parks, has revolutionized and revitalized the sport of dodgeball itself. By adding that extra extreme element of jumping on a trampoline, Air Dodgeball has breathed new life into the game and made it that much more enjoyable.
In fact, Air Dodgeball courts are popping up at indoor trampoline parks all across the country, making for the perfect fun-filled activity for team bonding, birthday parties, or just simple day outings with family or a group of friends.
There is even an international league known as the Ultimate Dodgeball Championship, which takes place at indoor trampoline parks and brings together the best and most competitive players from across the globe.
Dodgeball Tips and Tricks
Now that you’re fully aware of the game, how it’s played, and where you can play, it’s time to hit the playbook and study up. By learning a few new strategies, tips, and tricks, you can ensure that you’ll become the most feared dodgeballer in Grand Rapids. Here are a few pointers to help you beef up your game:
- Don’t Force It: One of the worst things you can do is attempt to force a ball and have it caught. If you don’t appear to have any clear shots, and you have viable ammo on your side, just throw the ball away at a wall or the ground where it can’t be caught. The worst thing you can do is lob one up.
- Spread Out: Utilize your team’s chemistry by spreading out and attacking from different angles and different spots on the court. That will make your attacks much more difficult to dodge, as the opposition won’t be able to keep track of all of your teammates at once.
- Aim Low: Lower shots are typically harder to catch or dodge than those aimed at chest-level. Once you identify your target, aim at their shins to minimize your chances of getting put out by a catch.
- Unified Attacks: Coordinate with your teammate to deploy your balls at the same time. This will wreak havoc on the opposing team’s ability to keep track of all the attacks coming from different angles.
- Keep Your Head On A Swivel: This is the last, and possibly the biggest tip. When you’re not attacking, you need to be wary of these same strategies being used against you. Remember, catches are usually what tend to win the game. So keep your head on a swivel at all times, and remember to use your hands and/or body to make a catch that could save the game for your team.
Indoor trampoline parks are the perfect battlegrounds for high-stakes dodgeball games. So, grab your group of friends, divide into teams, head for your local Rebounderz in Grand Rapids, and let the games begin.