Ancient Ballgame of Mesoamerica Term Paper

Pages: 7 (1820 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Sports

SAMPLE EXCERPT . . .
The teams would often be made up of seven players, though the number did vary, usually between two and eleven players. In some cases, the game would be played in large massive groups without team formations, where the goal would be for each individual playing to win, rather than to play as part of a team. The goal of the combatants was to get a rubber ball through the stone rings attached to the walls. Almost every description that has been found detailing the playing rules of the game specify that neither the hands nor feet can touch the ball. Especially the no-hands rule seems to be consistent throughout all versions of the game, yet some historical items contradict this information. "Two 8th century Maya sculptures and several Peten Maya vases show players with their hands on the ball." (Finney) the ball was certainly meant to stay in the air and in fast movement at all times. Because the hands and feet were off limits, the elbows, knees, and hips were the common body parts used to make contact with the ball. A point would be scored if the opposing team was prevented from returning the ball and having it fall to the ground. The ball would be driven from one end of the court to the other, across the center line, and into the area that is similar to today's end zones. The game could be automatically won by getting the ball through one of the stone rings attached to the walls, but those rings were guarded carefully. If a player failed at an attempt to throw the ball through the stone ring, then they would be given fault points, but a successful attempt meant immediate victory. "Great skill was required to keep the ball in play, with players often hitting the ball off the side wall. Requiring even greater skill was the feat of… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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