Regeln fuer das Jollyballspiel

Vienna Jollyball Rules

Stefan Böhmdorfer & Lisa Kollmer

Each team consists of two players. Each player has two juggling balls that are considered as part of the player.

A ball that can easily be distinguished from the players’ juggling balls is selected as “jollyball”. A stage ball or a bean bag can be chosen as jollyball, a bean bag is the common choice.

The playing field is in total 9 m long and 6 m wide. The top of the net is at a height of 1.62 m.

There is no referee, so the players must come to an understanding and try to be honest and fair. Disputed points are usually played again.

Typically, the game is played best-of-three sets played to 15 points (two points ahead, limited to max. 17 points), while scoring is only possible if the team has the serve. This ruling can be changed at the EJC due to time constraints.

The throw into the other court …

It is always an error if …

As long as one has not passed on the jollyball, it is an error if …

The serve:

It is not an error if the jollyball touches the net except at the serve.

Any part of the body can be used to pass the jollyball within the own team, but it must never be bounced with the hand.

Austria is one of the rare countries, where the idea of “Jollyball” – an invention of US American juggler and juggling teacher Dave Finnigan – fell on fertile ground. Soon after he had presented this game in his meanwhile legendary textbook The Complete Juggler (Vintage Books, New York 1987), it became an integral part of the Austrian juggling festivals and, especially, of the juggling courses at the university sports institutes in Graz, Innsbruck, Linz and Vienna. Since 1991, nearly every year, a national jollyball tournament was held in one of these university sports centres. And, as early as 1990, there had been written rules for the game, elaborated by Christoph Heinzle and colleagues. These rules were finally completed in 2000 (see: Regeln für das Jollyballspiel – sorry, in German only). Yet in the years after, a few rule changes evolved in practice; especially in Vienna, where jollyball is played weekly in the sports centre Grimmgasse of the Viennese university. Stefan Böhmdorfer and Lisa Kollmer kindly have written down the rules of the game as it is played now in Vienna in German and English. These “Vienna jollyball rules” also serve as guidelines for the jollyball tournaments at the European Juggling Conventions since 2011 and for the Austrian national tournaments. There is also a Slovenian translation available.

Stefan Böhmdorfer (Vienna, email: stefan [AT] boehmdorfer . cc): Austrian country representative in the European Juggling Association (EJA) since 2010. Plays jollyball since 2003 and makes the strong team Kollmer/Dorn (see below) responsible for never having achieved a better result in a tournament than a 4th place. He occasionally runs Austrian and European jollyball tournaments.

Lisa Kollmer (Vienna): Enthusiastic jollyball player since 1999. Participated with team mate Andrea Dorn successfully at several Austrian and European jollyball tournaments, achieving second place as best result in both kind of tournaments. In 2008 she and Andrea Dorn received the “Mag. Birgit Böhmdorfer award for outstanding female jollyball performance”.

More articles by the same authors on the website: see: Index: Böhmdorfer, Stefan, Index: Kollmer, Lisa

Copyright by the authors. Published with their permission. February 2014.