The human being is the most interesting and curious creature of the universe. He keeps on searching new things and games/sports are not separate from this curiousness. The man keeps on developing new sports and sports equipment. Some of these sports are just recreational games while others are seen as competitive games.
The ball is one of the best sports equipment that is ever made. It is one of the earliest known toys. It is a spherical object used in various sports for kicking, throwing or hitting.
Let us go on a ride to the curious world of sports balls. Here are some interesting facts about sports balls.
The evidence of balls being used in various sports can be seen in the earliest recorded literature and some oldest graphic representations of sports and games. If we go through the history of balls used in different games, we will be astonished by the gruesome historical facts. Since the technology has emerged a long way in comparison to ancient times, the sports balls reflect the changes in the material used.
The history of balls used in ancient times is not less than bizarre. The players of various games which includes ball as a sports equipment used to use almost everything that can be used as a ball such as simply stitched balls of cloth (the most commonly used), inflated bladders of animals. Use of animal and the human skull as a ball was the creepiest thing that has ever noticed about the history of the sports balls. In modern time, the materials like rubber, leather and synthetics are being used for making sports ball.
Certain rules that govern various sports balls used around the world. Several games require balls as the main equipment to play that particular game. For each of these games, there are certain specifications for the particular ball used including size, shape, weight, pressure, construction, color, marking and other countable characteristics. There are governing bodies that set these rules for the balls used in different outdoor and indoor games and keep an eye on the sports balls used in the games.
According to the information given in the book, Football/Soccer: History and Tactics, King Edward II in the early 14th century banned the Football game. A large noise was generated by hustling over the large balls that lead to the imposition of ban on this game as it was believed that because of heavy noise many evils may arise and that would be harmful to the humanity.
Later King Edward III and Edward IV also ban football because playing football was seen as a distraction from practicing archery, which was considered a mandatory occupation at that time. Edward III stated that, “No person shall practice football or such games, but every strong bodied person should shall practice bow since country national defense is on the shoulders of such bowmen”.
Another interesting fact about sports balls is the world’s largest rubber band ball is made of 7000,000 rubber bands and weighs 9032 lb.
The ball named “Megaton” which was made by Joel Waul from Florida; USA won the Guinness World Record for the Largest Rubber Band Ball in 2008. It took him four years to complete this ball. The ball is Height is about 6 feet and 7 inches.
The world’s largest twine ball is of 41.5 feet circumference and is on display in Ripley’s Believe it or Not museum, located in Branson, Missouri.
In 1987, J.C. Payne, a retired mason decided that he can beat the existing record of the largest twine ball, so he accumulated donated twine and wrap it up in the giant ball.
In 1994, Guinness updated that his ball has surpassed the previous largest twine ball. Later that year he sold his creation to Ripley’s Believe it or Not and now you can view this creation for only $18.
Interestingly, if we look at our solar system and compare it with the balls then if the Sun’s size is similar to a beach ball, Jupiter would be considered as a golf ball and the earth would be similar to a pea.
Alan Sheppard, an astronaut of the Apollo 14 mission tried and succeeded in hitting a golf ball on the moon in 1971. Alan claimed that he had seen the ball flying for many miles.
In 2010, another astrophysicist, Ethan Siegel decided to calculate the distance of that hit ball. It was observed and believed that the ball went around 4000 m and flew for 7 seconds but this question is still open since 4 km is quite a long distance to be captured by a camera.
The world record for a maximum number of balls held in the mouth of a dog was 5 tennis balls. This record was made a dog named Augie in 2003. Augie is a golden retriever from Texas, United States.
But recently, in February 2020 another golden retriever named Finley Molloy broke the previous Guinness record by holding 6 tennis balls in his mouth.
It was hard for his achievement to get recognized because of the pandemic and the huge amount of paperwork by the Guinness. But in 23rd February 2020 he finally got his place in Guinness World Record website.
According to the interview given to Democrat & Chronicle by the owners of Finley, Cheri and Rob Molloy told that they first witnessed their dog’s talent when he was just 2 years old. They used took him to the nearby lake and while playing he used to hold four balls at an age of two.
A table tennis ball must bounce 23 cm high when dropped from 30 cm height according to international rules for testing the strength and weight of the ball.
In accordance with the international rules of snooker, the referee must tell the color of a ball if it is being requested by a color blind player.
Ball is also an English surname. Numerous Britons are having the surname Ball.
Some great and famous people with Ball surnames are Alice Ball, a chemist who invented the Ball method for treating leprosy, Alan Ball, a screenwriter, Angeline Ball, an actress and many more.
While going through the history, you will notice that a few forms of ball games are portrayed on ancient Egyptian monuments.
Even the Romans, who were known to dislike participatory sports, ball-playing was seen their favorite time investment thing. Many Romans used to build ball courts in their luxuries villas. Romans used to make sports ball with leather strips which were sewn together to form a spherical shape like a pouch which then were filled with various materials. The smallest ball was stuffed with feathers named harpastum and the largest one was an air-filled bladder called follis and was similar to modern time’s basketball or football.
If we look from the playing point of view, many ancient games contain throwing a ball back and forth among the players of a group on the one hand while on the other hand there were also genuine team tournament or competitions held among the Greeks.
For playing a ball game, skills are required whether playing with the ball only or in a game which involves other instruments for striking the ball. Keeping in mind this thing, the ball has been evolved over the years and became specialized in a multiplicity of types according to various sports and to attract the spectators.
For example, with the popularization of the forward pass in American Football, changes are made in the ball. Modern football is more elongated in comparison to the earlier egg-shaped rugby ball. The modern ball is easier to attain accuracy while throwing it. This has impacted the sports and made forward pass played a more popular role.
In conclusion, it can be said that necessity is the mother of inventions and the same applies to the revolutionary change in various sports balls. These were modified according to needs and to break the monotony of the games and made them more interesting. Hope these facts have given you some new information and enhanced your knowledge of sports balls. Keep on reading for more such interesting topics.
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