Tuesday, 28 May 2024

Newcomb Ball

Newcomb ball is an exciting team sport that originated in the late 19th century in the United States. It was created by a physical education instructor who wanted to provide her students with a simple and inclusive game that could accommodate any number of players. While inspired by volleyball, Newcomb ball has a simplified gameplay that sets it apart.

How to Play

Newcomb ball is played on a rectangular court divided by a rope that acts as the net. The objective of the game is to throw the ball with as much force as possible onto the opponent’s court in a way that prevents them from catching it. The official Newcomb ball is specially designed for the sport, but a volleyball can also be used.

A match consists of two halves, with the duration agreed upon by both teams before the game. Similar to volleyball, each half begins with a serve where a player throws the ball into play from outside their playing area. The game continues with catches and throws until one team scores a point. Points are awarded when the opposing team fails to catch the ball or throws it out of bounds. The team with the most points at the end of the match emerges victorious.

Accessibility and Recreation

While Newcomb ball may not be as widely recognized as other sports, it serves as a recreational activity suitable for individuals who may not be as athletic, older adults, and people with disabilities. Its simplified gameplay and inclusive nature make it an enjoyable pastime for a wide range of individuals.

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Similar Sports

There are a few sports that share similarities with Newcomb ball:

  • Catchball: Catchball is an easier version of volleyball where players catch and throw the ball instead of hitting it.

  • Volleyball: Volleyball is a team sport played with two teams of six players. The goal is to hit a large ball over a high net and score points by making the ball touch the ground on the opponent’s side of the court.

  • Throwball: Throwball is a sport similar to Newcomb ball and is played predominantly in India. It is a variation of volleyball.

  • Hoover Ball: Hoover Ball is a unique version of volleyball that was specifically invented for US President Herbert Hoover. In this variation, a medicine ball is thrown over the net and caught before being thrown back.

  • Fistball: Fistball is an outdoor team sport that shares similarities with volleyball, but allows players to hit the ball with their fists.


Q: Is Newcomb ball still played competitively?
A: While competitive events for Newcomb ball are scarce, the sport remains popular as a recreational activity.

Q: Can Newcomb ball be played by people of all ages and abilities?
A: Absolutely! Newcomb ball is inclusive and can be enjoyed by people of various ages and abilities.

Q: Can a volleyball be used instead of a Newcomb ball?
A: Yes, a volleyball can be used as an alternative to a Newcomb ball in games of Newcomb ball.


Newcomb ball offers a fun and simplified version of volleyball that can be enjoyed by players of all skill levels. Its inclusive nature makes it a great choice for recreational activities and encourages participation from individuals who may not typically engage in team sports. So why not gather your friends and give Newcomb ball a try?

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