Boccia is a target Sport played by individuals, pairs or teams. It is a strategic version of the game bowls.
Boccia developed in Europe as a sport for individuals with disabilities in the early 1980s. However the game seems to originate in Greece where individuals used to throw large stones at a target. A game very similar to Boccia was played throughout the Roman Empire, and later developed variants such as lawn bowls, nine pin, and boule. A lot of European countries found that there were a large number of individuals with disabilities who were unable to take advantage of other sports so Boccia was successfully adapted for people with disabilities.
Boccia is a target sport played by individuals, pairs or teams. Boccia is played with 13 balls (6 red, 6 blue, 1 white). The jack ball is used to start off the game and is thrown by one of the competitors on the court. It requires a high degree of muscle control, accuracy, concentration and tactical awareness with the goal being to land six of the coloured balls closer to the white target ball than the opponent’s balls.
Boccia is a non contact sport, where the game focuses around a target. The balls used are solid but pliable, that have a good rolling quality and are easy to grip. The balls also have the effect of reducing the advantage of physical strength, so that skill becomes the overriding factor. The player may propel the ball into court by any manner he or she desires as long as the player is in control of the movement at the moment of release. In certain classifications, where the player is unable to propel the ball onto court using their hands, they are allowed to use an “assistive device”. These assistive devices are more commonly known as ramps or chutes. Any athlete that is unable to release the ball down the ramp using their hand, may use a head or hand pointer.
The game must be played from a seated position, which makes it perfect for either manual or motorized wheelchair users.
Why is Boccia such a great game?
- It can be played on any flat indoor surface.
- All levels and abilities can play
- Provides an outlet for social contact
- All Age Levels can Play
- Develop New Skills
- Game is very easily learnt
- Non-disabled individuals can play
- Stimulates mental capacity
- Can be played recreationally or competitively
- Boosts confidence and self esteem
- Provides an outlet to participate in sport
- Its a LIFE LONG SPORT