Bocce ball is an ancient yard game that has now become popular around the world. The goal of this game is to land the ball closest to the target called a pallina. Two teams play in this game. You can either have one, two, or four players on your team. Each player gets to throw the bocce ball and land it close to the pallina. The closer you get, the more points you score. The more points you score, the more chances you have of winning. Here’s how the game works:
• If you have one player in a team, that player can throw four balls.
• If there are two players in a team, you and your teammate will have two balls each.
• If there are four players in a team, each player will have one ball.
On a side note, if you are interested in a more fast-paced game of fun with friends, read our article about the best spikeball set to learn a little about the game of Spikeball. It has become increasingly popular and provides hours of healthy fun.
Bocce Ball Rules
The game starts after a coin toss. You can choose one of the two things if you win the toss: choose to toss the first ball at the pallina or select the ball’s color that you want to throw. To start the game, you need to roll the pallina or ask one of your team members to roll it. But remember, the one who rolls the pallina gets the chance to first toss the ball. You can roll the pallina as long as you want, but make sure it crosses the court’s centerline and stays within the playing boundary.
Related: Read our article on the best luxury bocce ball sets
If you can’t toss the pallina properly, your opponent will toss it next. But if the opponent also fails to toss the pallina, your team will get the next chance. Once you throw the pallina into play, your team can throw the bocce ball.
The ball must land within the court’s boundary (learn how to make a bocce ball court). If the ball goes out of play, you can roll again. But if you still can’t keep it inside the playing area, your opponent will get the chance to roll.
You not only have to keep your bocce ball within the playing area but also make sure it lands close to the pallina. The nearest ball to the pallina wins. If your team’s rolls are closer to the pallina than your opponent’s, it will be an “in” ball. On the other hand, the balls that are not close to the pallina are “out” balls.
Once you roll an “in” ball, you need to step aside and allow your opponent to roll. The opponent will get an additional chance if his ball goes out of play. A full game continues until both the teams finish rolling all their balls. This means every team gets four chances to roll their balls close to the pallina. The game restarts from the court’s opposite end. Whoever wins the first game gets the chance to toss the pallina next.
You must make underhand throws. However, you have the option to bounce, toss, or roll the ball, depending on your strategy. All you need to do is keep the ball in play by not throwing it so hard that it crosses the playing boundary. There is also a foul line on the court. It ensures that both teams deliver the balls down the court properly and land them close to the pallina.
Hitting the Balls
What if you accidentally knock the opponent’s ball while trying to land your ball closer to the pallina? That’s perfectly fine. In fact, it’s one of the popular strategies implemented by bocce ball veterans to get their balls close to the pallina and at the same time knock the opponent’s ball from an advantageous position. Hitting the pallina isn’t illegal either. But the ball should remain in play after hitting the pallina.
Crossing the Foul Line
You need to keep the foul line in mind while rolling your ball. Don’t step on it while releasing the ball; otherwise, you will receive your first warning. The opponent will get a point if you touch the foul line again while throwing your ball. You will not receive any point even if your ball lands closest to the pallina. Alternatively, your opponent may choose to decline the penalty point and instead, want to complete the frame by throwing the ball next.
The more frames you complete, the more points you score. Therefore, try to roll the ball slowly so that it doesn’t go out of the court and give you a chance to remain in the game.