When kids arrive at camp they run straight for the gaga ball pit, an octagon shaped playing area with knee-high walls. The ball is dropped in the middle of the pit, the kids start yelling ” Gaga” and they go wild, but what is this game?
This game craze takes Dodge ball to a new level, but Gaga is not a new concept. This decades-old game started in Israel and was being played in Jewish Summer Camps by the 1970’s. Now kids are playing it in camps and schools all over the world. Gaga means “hit, hit” in Hebrew. This fast-paced, high-energy game is played in an octagonal pit, and is not a team sport. All players are in the middle of the enclosed pit facing one another. The GaGa game uses a rubber playground ball. The object of the game is for players to use their hands to hit the other players with the ball, while avoiding being hit themselves. Players are eliminated if they are hit by the ball. This continues until 1 player remains.
How to play GaGa Ball:
- The game begins when one chosen player holds the ball and yells, “Ga!” All other players yell “Ga” back. Then the ball is thrown against the side of the pit, and once the has bounced, it is considered “live” and play begins.
- Once the ball is in play, any player can hit the ball with an open or closed hand.
- Players hit the ball with their hands only, it must be punched or hit with a hand or fist. Only one consecutive hit is allowed by each player. Players may not hold or catch the ball.
- Any player who is hit by the ball below the knees, either directly or by off the wall, is “out” and must exit the gaga pit.
- Players who are “out” of the game stand on the outside of the pit area.
- If the ball goes out of the Ga-Ga pit, the last player to touch the ball is out.
- If a player catches the ball before it bounces, the player who had the last contact with the ball is out.
- Once the player hits the ball, they must wait until the ball touches someone else before hitting it again so- no double touches.
- When there are only two players left in the game, they may touch the ball three times in a row. At this point in the game, holding the ball is still not allowed. Last player standing is the winner of the round!We love this game! It quickly turns over, keeping multiple kids active and involved. Seems to be a Flat Rock favorite. Ask your kids if they are playing GaGa at school or at camp.