Adding Dodgeball to Your Volleyball Facility
Dodgeball is a sport known in many countries as just a kid's school game. But in actuality, the sport is played at the high school age, as well as adult, with many countries now fielding international teams. With 9.7 million players in the USA alone, this sport is on the rise, and if you're looking for other ways to book off peak court time at your volleyball facility, dodgeball can be a lucrative addition.
The sport of dodgeball is at an all-time high, with participation numbers growing exponentially since the comedy "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story," featurnig Ben Stiller and Vince Vaughn, was produced in 2004. The movie helped spark interest for others to create leagues and tournaments of their own. The U.S. National Dodgeball League, founded in 2004, consists of 24 professional dodgeball teams. Now Australia and New Zealand host the Trans-Tasman Anzac tournaments, Asia with the annual Asia Dodgeball Championships, and Europe with the annual European Dodgeball Championships. At least 17 countries in Europe field competitive dodgeball leagues.
So what does that mean for your volleyball club?
A dodgeball league or tournament can be an ideal way to fill off peak court time and generate more revenue for a volleyball facility. The participants could already be members of your club, parents, friends and the local community.
The great thing about dodgeball is any athlete can come to the court and bring a different skill along with them, and those who weren't so athletic in the past can easily pick up on the game as it has an easy learning curve. Whether players just want to have fun or want to go at it competitively, you can find a big following.
Dodgeball is very cost efficient and easy to implement. Below is the equipment needed for one dodgeball court:
- Space for a dodgeball court. A court can be played in a 50' x 25' area. It is best played on a basketball or volleyball court, but can also be played on an indoor soccer field or even outdoors.
- 8 Dodgeballs. There are 6 at a time in the game, plus 2 extra dodgeballs at the scorers table in case a ball pops. There are two options for dodgeballs: 8.5 inch rubber balls at $7 each or 7 inch no-sting rubber balls at $12 each.
- 1 Scorers Table with 1 person keeping score. A flip score or electronic score board can be used.
- 1 Referee for a childrens game, and two referees for an adult game. An extra whistle can be given to the score keeper to get everyone's attention
- Tape to mark the dodgeball court. $4.30 for a roll of 1" tape with 60 yards. The playing field is a rectangle with ideal measurements: 60' x 30' – Identical to a volleyball court.. Divide the court into two (2) equal sections by a center-line and attack-lines 3m from, and parallel to the centerline.
- Poster board for bracket or schedule, and the rules of the game. Since dodgeball is still growing in many areas, an official rule set doesn't exist as many leagues have slightly different styles of play. A good set of rules can be found here , or a more simplified version is available here.
To help gain the interest of players joining dodgeball events at your facility, you could let them know about USA Dodgeball Finals.
You could also volunteer to be host location of the State Championships, which consists of three divisions:
- Youth (ages 14 to 17) with soft no-sting rubber balls
- Coed (ages 18+) with the soft no-sting rubber balls requiring at least two members of the opposite gender
- and Open (ages 18+) with 8.5 inch rubber balls and any combination of genders on team.
The 1st place team from each State Championship advances to one of 10 locations for the Regional Championships. The top two teams in each division from the Regional Championships meet at the USA Dodgeball Finals, and it's all spread out enough to make it more convenient for traveling teams. Originally, the Parks & Rec departments in the most populated city of every state were contacted. They were given two weeks to reply and if no reply has been sent, we then forwarded the invite to the next three most populated city's Parks & Rec departments. As this has all just started, we're at the stage of selecting dates for the State Championships and even some Regional Championships already.
If you'd like to host State Championships and/or Regional Championships you may contact us through our website at www.idaleague.com
If a State Championship is already being hosted in your state with all three divisions, feel free to contact us about other ways to help you gain interest in players signing up!
About The Author
Cory Cooper began playing dodgeball in 2001 in the Memphis area. Since then he has competed on the 2013 USA Dodgeball Team that competed in the New Zealand World Invitationals and spent 14 months in Melbourne, Australia playing in multiple leagues and championships. He was honoredby the European Dodgeball Federation after 15 years of experience with the sport in 6 countries. In 2015, Cory was the member of the Gold winning team at the world's largest dodgeball event, the Germany Beach Cup.