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Jorkyball: Two-A-Side Italian Inspired Soccer Game

Jorkyball is a spin on the classic game of soccer, but instead of a traditional field, it takes place in a compact, enclosed arena made of Plexiglas. Measuring 32 feet by 16 feet and covered in synthetic turf, players use the walls to pass, dribble, and score, just like in squash. With no exterior, the entire court surface is fair game, with the only catch being that only feet can be used to handle the ball – hands are a no-go, just like in traditional soccer.

jorky court inside a gymnasium

Concept Of The Game

Jorkyball is a sport that emphasizes speed, and this is reflected in its straightforward rules. Teams of two players compete in a caged court, consisting of one forward and one defender. Players switch roles between sets, so the forward from one round becomes the defender in the next. With these simple guidelines, Jorkyball offers a fast-paced and dynamic gaming experience.

As there is no physical contact in this indoor sport, it is suitable also for women and children.  It is not said that whoever is good at eleven or five a side football will be good at jorkyball, where it is essential to know how to play off the walls.

The classic “long-range cannon shot” from afar, so to speak, can be counterproductive because the jorky ball, if it does not enter the goal, could bounce off the opposite wall, goes back, and risk an own goal.

Another variation of soccer that is played in an enclosed space is Human Foosball. Chout out our recent article on this growing game.

At the same time, when a player is face to face with the goalkeeper, it’s almost impossible to direct to the goals because the goal is so small that you risk shooting at him. Better to look to use the walls or teammate to get around the opponent sideways. Not even dribbling here is of much use because there is no space to pick up speed.

It is better to get rid of it immediately when you have the ball because you will lose it at the slightest delay. And, precisely for this reason, Jorkyball is an activity also recommended for those who play traditional football, to learn how to move in very narrow spaces, hunted by opponents.

player shooting in jorkyball

The Games History

Gilles Paniez, a French native, likely had no idea of the significant impact his creation of jorkyball would have when he first invented it in his Lyon garage in 1987, influenced by former Inter Milan manager Corrado Orrico’s similar pitch.

Jorkyball made its debut as an exhibition sport at the 1990 FIFA World Cup and was introduced to a global audience for the first time. With its transparent walls, the sport can be easily watched by spectators and large crowds, who can see the action unfold from within the court.

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By 1999, the number of jorkyball courts in Italy had skyrocketed to over 100 due to its popularity after the 1998 World Cup. Meanwhile, the sport gained traction in France with the formation of 35 jorkyball clubs. [3]

Despite its underground status in both countries, jorkyball has maintained a strong following for the past two decades due to the lack of central promotion. The world of jorkyball is governed by the Jorkyball International Federation. [4]

jorkyball world championships game going on

How To Play Jorkyball

Jorkyball is a fast-paced sport with three sets, each with a target of seven goals to win. Teams consist of one striker, one defender, and a substitute player.

The attacker can roam the court except for the throw-in area, which belongs to the opposing team. Meanwhile, the defender is restricted to their designated zone. Players can switch positions after a successful pass.

Fouls are committed if a forward jumps over the opponent’s throw-in line or crosses the halfway line. Touching the ball with hands while blocking the goal or intentionally stopping it is also considered a foul. A team must also pass the ball within seven seconds of having possession in their box or designated area.

When a foul occurs, the opposing team is awarded a penalty kick, taken from the designated halfway line. The defender can only attempt to block the shot.

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Jorkyball’s compact court size makes it an excellent option for kids and adults seeking an intense workout while participating in an action-packed sport. It is almost impossible to stand still in the game to catch your breath, so suitable for burning fat.

Jorkyball is more fun than running on the treadmill or riding the cycle ergometer. In addition, the rules are simple, and no special equipment is needed since it is essentially soccer in a small space.

kids playing 2x2 soccer

Jorkyball Court And Equipment

  • The court is a rectangle with plexiglass transparent walls so that fans and referees can see the action.
  • Length: 9.80 meters (minimum 9.50 meters) [1]
  • Width: 4.80 m (minimum 4.50m)
  • Height: 2.70m (minimum 2.50m)
  • Goal size: 110cm x 110 cm [2]
  • Hand sown felt ball, weighing 200 grams
  • Jorkyball International Federation is the governing body
  • Flat sole, non marking indoor soccer shoes must be worn

Live TV & On Demand Soccer Streaming

  • Watch Premier League And Euro Leagues
  • On Any Device. Anytime. Anywhere
  • Stream Live, Rewind Or Replay 
  • No Contracts, No Long Term Commitments

References:
[1], [3], and [4]: https://www.cladglobal.com/architecture_design_features?codeid=30371
[2]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jorkyball

Images:
www.3bble.com/po/3bble.com/fornecedor-oficial-de-jorkyball (main image)
www.journalexpress.ca/2018/11/17/jorkyball-trois-drummondvillois-representeront-le-canada-au-japon/
www.jugglepro.com/blogs/blog/jorkyball-presentation-du-jeu-et-des-regles?logged_in_customer_id=&lang=en
www.actu.fr/occitanie/perpignan_66136/qu-est-ce-que-le-jorkyball-ce-sport-dont-les-championnats-d-europe-se-deroulent-a-perpignan_46312807.html