“Broomball? Um, what is that?”
That was my initial response three years ago when my new friend, Hannah, asked my roommate, neighbors and I to play in a broomball league throughout a portion of the semester. I had no idea what this game was, nor had I ever heard of it. But did that stop me from playing? Not a chance.
Broomball, she explained in a less efficient manner, is a game similar to ice hockey. There are two teams consisting of six players, including the goaltender. The object of the game is to score more goals than the other team. Sounds simple, right? Well, take off those ice skates and put on sneakers, and instead of a hockey stick, replace it with a “broom.” Oh, and you get a miniature ball (about the size of the balls you use when you play basketball in your room, with the hoop attached to the back of the door) instead of a puck.
Needless to say, I fell in love with the game. We played various teams at around 11 p.m. every week, providing a relief from homework. My friends and I were so psyched about it, we even planned to sign up every year for the rest of our college career. It was freshman year then.
It’s senior year now and I played broomball again for the first time last night since freshman year. College got in the way — suddenly my classes were harder, I had to work more hours and homework became more prevalent than gallivanting across the ice. Last night, however, kicked off a fierce competition between the employees at Campus Recreation and Cooper/Glimmerglass Fitness Centers. Although every member of my team (the fitness centers) hadn’t played in the same amount of time as myself or longer, and Campus Rec plays nearly every day, we couldn’t say no when they challenged us. So I put the homework aside for an hour and shuffled onto the ice once more.
After two 20-minute periods of a lot of falling and checking into the boards, Campus Rec added their first tally to the win column with a 5-0 victory. However, they believe that this was a one-time deal. What they don’t realize is that we don’t give up that easily. I have a feeling that I’ll be on the ice much more often this semester, whether I like it or not. My co-workers and boss might get upset if I don’t.
Broomball originated in Canada, but is now played across the world, particularly in the U.S., Australia and Japan. It’s a recreational sport, but play can often get intense. By the end of the game, I was sweating through my face mask and my shirt had subtle sweat stains. Not bad when I was playing in a freezing hockey rink and I was wearing a long-sleeved shirt and sweatpants. It definitely made up for my lack of a workout yesterday; I burned about 476 calories in an hour. So if you ever hear broomball being promoted in your area, don’t be afraid to give it a shot!
Have you ever heard of or played broomball before? What do you think about the sport?