FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE SPORT OF WALLYBALL
How do you play wallyball?
The general concepts of wallyball are very similar to indoor volleyball. The game is played in a racquetball court with a net strung across the short way at the mid-point of the court. The net height is the same as it is in volleyball. The ball is of similar size to a volleyball, but is made of a latex material very like a racquetball. Due to the pressure and surface of the ball, if you do get thwacked with it, it stings a bit more than a standard volleyball.
Wallyball is not just volleyball played in a racquetball court. It is a separate sport with separate rules, and playing the sport requires the development of a separate set of skills. Wallyball is a faster game than volleyball and as a result, it is a harder game to master.
Today there are millions of players worldwide.
How, where and when was wallyball created?
Wallyball (known in some places as rebound volleyball) is a fast-paced sport that was created at the Calabasas Racquetball Club (Calabasas, CA), in 1979 . The idea was an attempt to help bring more business into the club in the summer months. The club pro Joe Garcia then took the idea mainstream. However, the sport roots go back to as early as 1972. The game was called Deckerball. It is very similar to the game of wallyball and could be the predecessor to the game of what is now known as wallyball. In Kansas, IL, a high school physical education teacher and a couple of his students, including Mark Decker sat down to create a game that combined several skills from other games that would be used for indoor play during bad weather situations. By combining handball (racquetball with no racquet), tennis, and volleyball, they arrived at the game that is called Deckerball (after Mark Decker).
What is the difference between a volleyball and a wallyball ball?
Most wallyballs are the same size and weight of a standard bladder volleyball however, regulation wallyballs are made of rubber instead of leather.
Are there official rules for wallyball?
Yes, there are also a variety of ways in which players from different geographical areas play and interpret the rules of wallyball.
Joe Garcia created the first wallyball rulebook in 1979. The rulebook and just a few pages, but it worked.
A mutual friend introduced Joe to UCLA Volleyball Coach Al Scates in Los Angeles. Al Scates and UCLA volleyball won NCAA championships in 1970-71-72-74-75-76-79-81-82-83-84-87-89-93-95-96-98-2000-06. He is the only coach to have guided his team to three successive titles three times, including four straight from 1981-84. Scates was named Coach of the Year in 1984, '87, '93, '96, '98 and 2006.
With the help of Coach Scates, Joe developed the first complete set of official wallyball rules that were safe, fun and easy to understand. During the decade of the 80s, the sport has experienced a large growth in the number of people playing the game.
For those of you that play socially or in leagues, some of the rules relating to the structure of tournaments will need to be altered or ignored in order for you to enjoy your activity. In addition, League and Tournament Directors may change rules stated in this manual in order to meet their specific circumstances. These changes are called “House Rules”.
It doesn't matter whether you play socially or competitively, the basic game and ball handling rules of the game should apply.
The WII (Wallyball International, Inc.) latest rulebook was printed in 1990. The WII has modified their rules, but are not currently listed in the WII rulebook.
The AWA (American Wallyball Association) created a rulebook in 1989. To me, it is a good rulebook, but needs to be updated.
The AUWP (Association of United Wallyball Players) released phase 1 of their rulebook in 2001. Steve Fuhrman led a committee of players from all areas of the USA and Canada that gave their input and experience. The AWA rulebook was used as a guideline. USA Volleyball helped with setting techniques.
WIN! (Wallyball Information Network) released their rulebook in 2005. This was phase 2 of the AUWP rulebook. Again, Steve Fuhrman led a committee of players
from all areas of the USA and Canada to completed this project.
Today, players again want us to look at some new rules adopted by volleyball or there is a need to explain other rules. Steve led a committee of players from all areas of the USA and Canada to completed this project. Feedback was received from many areas of the world.
WIN! is happy to announce the release of their free 2012 Wallyball Rulebook - Phase 3 (available for download after 1/1/2012). It will include rules for five and six player teams.
If you would like to learn more on the WIN! rules, please see the documents at the top of this page. WIN! has a complete rulebook that you can download for free.
Wallyball rules are detailed for each level of play. An OPEN player (top division) has tougher ball handling guidelines than all other divisions.
Where can I play wallyball?
Wallyball can be played in any standard size racquetball/handball court. Most health clubs, YMCA’s, Parks and Recreation facilities and colleges have racquetball courts. For a listing of facilities with wallyball courts, please click here.
(It's based on the American Wallyball Association and AUWP rulebook)
A new Wallyball Division was introduced in 2019. It is called cross-over.
This division is a combination of Volleyball/Wallyball rules.
WIN! traveled to several states (ND, FL, PA,TN) to see how others had combined Wallyball & Volleyball rules.
Wallyball is played throughout the world with many different house rules involved. A house rule should not change how the game is played. This is very important when a tournament is held. Players need to know what to expect before they register.
**A new Wallyball Rulebook is on the way with the latest additions and changes for this great sport!
It will be available to everyone FREE of charge.