Spikeball has made a resurgence on Harding’s campus this semester, as its simplicity and
room for socializing draw students’ attention.
The game made its premiere in 1989 but failed to sustain any popularity. However, in
2008 Spikeball Inc. brought the game back. The game is a mashup of volleyball and foursquare
with a few additional rules. Classic rules include a two-on-two person game playing with a round
net and a small bouncy ball. The game only uses a net, ball, four people and an open area,
making the game easy to transport and play in various outdoor areas. On a nice day, the front
lawn and surrounding areas of the Ganus Activities Complex are common places to see students
playing spikeball. Senior Bryson Gentry goes to social media to extend his invite to students
when he wants to play spikeball.
“I just want to go outside and do something, so I will post on Facebook through a club
page or there have been sometimes where I posted on my Instagram story ‘hey going out to play
spikeball, love to have you out there, we need two more,’” Gentry said.
A game of spikeball can be set up within minutes, creating a competitive yet social game.
With the small net causing people to be close to each other, as well as frequent stops in play, the
game is seen to be very conversational. Junior Ender Freeman has experienced the social aspects
of spikeball and uses it as a way to meet new people.
“The game is easy to learn, easy to play,” Freeman said. “We would take it to the front
lawn, invite some girls, get different social groups going. We would bring it to mixers for club
stuff, and it is an easy way to break the ice.”
Spikeball has formed a community at Harding, consisting of numerous opportunities to
play and people who will join,and sophomore Emma Kate Horton has become increasingly
involved this semester.
“I have met so many different people in the past few weeks that I had no idea who they
were before,” Horton said. “The game, because you are always moving, you get to laugh and talk
and get to know each other as it goes.”
The growth of spikeball over the past couple of years has led to intramural tournaments
being held at Harding. Team “Mask Off,” composed of Freeman and junior John Allen Keith,
won the tournament on Sept. 12. As of Oct. 8, there are no tournaments scheduled in the future,
but for those interested in learning spikeball, the Harding community is welcoming to
participants of all skill and experience levels.