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BOSSA ON THE BEACH
Volleyball, soccer, and gymnastics combine overseas to form new summer sport
In junior high there was always that kid who had a trampoline in his backyard.

Coincidentally, he was also the kid with the most friends. Everyone would go to his house and jump on that thing, sometimes five or six at a time, attempting backflips dangerously close to the edge. And every time your mom would wonder if you were coming back with a broken neck.

Thanks to Filip Eyckmans, you can now take trampoline jumping to another level—if you don't mind going overseas for it.

Just after the turn of the century, Eyckmans dreamed up a new sport called bossaball (supposedly, he actually did think of it in his sleep). According to the web site, bossaball combines volleyball, soccer and gymnastics into one extremely visually entertaining activity, which you can watch below (video embedded below, we hope).

The bossaball court is set up like a volleyball court and is completely inflatable. The nuance of the game involves a trampoline built into the center, which allows one player to spring a dozen or so feet in the air, usually resulting in a vicious spike.

Teams are made up of three to five players and are allowed to touch the ball with any part of their body including the head, hands, chest or feet. Each side gets eight touches, which usually end with setting up the player on the trampoline. Teams can score three points by hitting the ball into the trampoline and one point for any other area besides the bossawall, which surrounds the trampoline. Games are played to score 25 points.

While Eyckman originally launched the sport in Belgium, it has gained popularity throughout Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, and recently Brazil. It's even found sponsors like Orangina, Fanta, Coca-Cola, Nestle and McDonalds for international competitions, and was invited to attend the European championship of the UEFA—the highest soccer body in Europe. Unfortunately, bossaball hasn't found a place in the U.S., but it has been added to the "to-do" list of travelers heading to Europe and South America.

The unique thing about bossaball is that it is probably more about entertainment than competition. Supposedly, the name came from Brazilian bossa nova music. The referee doubles as a DJ, and is usually equipped with a microphone and turntables that blare Latin American music. Scantly clad dancers can often be found dancing around the court.

I don't know many junior high kids who had that in their backyard.

bossa

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