If you love playing sport and you love visiting warm places to spend time on the beach, then beach sports are the dream combination. There are a few beach sports that have a lot of publicity and you will probably know about such as beach volleyball but there are actually a whole lot more out there for you to try. So whether you are thinking of joining a new beach sports team or simply want some ideas for the family holiday, here are some of the most popular beach sports that you can try:
Soccer Volleyball/Foot Volley
If you visit Brazil you will see lots of people on the beach playing soccer volley, which involves a net with a team on each side. The ball cannot hit the ground, so the aim is to volley the ball over the net using the same skills as you do in football/soccer such as kicking, heading, using your knee or chest. At the highest standards, this is played with two players on each team but if you are just starting out, you won’t be having many rallies with such low numbers!
Handball is becoming increasingly popular in the UK but it has been popular in some areas of Europe for a long time. So a beach based version has developed, with less players but the same rules and set up. Handball is like a mix between soccer, basketball and rugby and you throw the ball into the opponent’s net to score.
Beach volleyball probably doesn’t need much introduction, as it is a well-established sport that is often televised as part of the Olympics and other events. It is a direct adaptation of the traditional sport of volleyball, usually involving a two-player team and the object is to volley the ball onto the opposition’s court without them returning it.
The players can use three touches amongst the team, using their allocated number of touches to outwit the player using skills such as setting, blocking and smashing the ball. A strong serve similar to that in tennis can also win immediate points. The main sport equipment that you require is the net, volleyball and something to mark the court out with. Some people prefer to play volleyball on the beach because they can dive with a soft landing and when the weather is nice it is better to be outdoors than in a sports hall.
Just like standard football/soccer the ball is played by foot or head and players pass the ball to their team mates with the objective to kick or head the ball into the opponent’s goal to score. It is much more difficult to pass a ball along a soft sandy surface so the players often need to improvise with how they play the ball. This is another sport that is often played on Brazilian beaches.
With nothing more than a rugby ball and a stretch of sand that can be marked as a rugby field, you can organise a game of beach rugby. The most common form is based on rugby union. You can choose how many players you place on each team and also you can decide whether to play touch rugby or tackling rugby. The usual size of pitch to mark out would be between 30 to 50 metres in length and half as wide. Again, playing on the soft sand means that diving to score a try is much softer when landing than on a hard grass surface. It is obviously going to be much harder to run in dry sand though so it is a slower version of the standard game of rugby.