Bocce Ball, also called Bocci or Bocce, is a game of relaxed strategy. It’s calming, repetitive movements, and the ability to be played outside, make this sport a terrific way to relax and enjoy your backyard with friends. Bocce is played between two players, or two teams of up to four players per team.
How to Play Bocce Ball
Divide players into two teams of one, two, or four players each. Four balls are passed out among the teams, divided equally among the players. A coin toss determines who starts.
To start, a player from the starting team stands behind the foul line (located 10 feet from the throwing end of the court) and throws the small ball, or pallino towards the opposite end of the playing surface. The same person who threw the pallino then throws a Bocce Ball, trying to get as close to the pallino as possible without touching it.
The next team throws a Bocce Ball to try to get closer to the pallino than the first team. If they succeed in getting closer, it becomes the first team’s turn. If the second team’s Bocce Ball doesn’t come closer, then they continue to throw until they get closer to the pallino, or they are out of balls.
The team with the closest ball gets a point for each of its balls which are closer to the pallino than the other team’s closest ball.
The frame ends after all eight balls have been thrown and the points have been tallied up. The scoring team begins the next frame. If neither team scored in the previous game, the team that threw the pallino last time begins the next frame. Continue on this way until one team has reached the set point total.
The History of Bocce
Bocce Ball has been around for thousands of years, with the basics of the game being traced as far back as 5000 BC in Egypt, when people first began settling around the Nile Delta.
The Objective of Bocce
The main objective of Bocce is to get as many of your bocce (large, weighted balls) as close to the pallino (smaller target ball) as possible. The closer your bocce is to the pallino, the more points you are awarded.
Bocce Ball Playing Surfaces
Bocce Ball can be played on a variety of flat surfaces, including designated bocce ball courts (which are 76 feet long and 12 feet wide), beach sand, or in the grass in your yard or local park. If you take a walk through a park on a nice day you’re likely to see teams playing this popular game.
Bocce Ball Scoring
Each team takes turns throwing their bocce balls as close to the pallino as possible, and once everyone has thrown their balls, the distance of the balls from the pallino is calculated. Each ball that is closer to the target ball than the nearest ball of the opposing team is awarded one point. Games are usually played to a set point total, usually 12, 15, or 21.
More Ways to Enjoy Your Backyard:
- The Official Rules of Backyard Football
- 5 Minute Games to Play With Your Kids in the Backyard
- How to Plant an Edible Garden
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