Spikeball™ Toulouse Major: Europe Welcomes Inaugural Spikeball Major Tournament
Photos by Corentin Bureau @yellowballcult
The anticipation is building as the first-ever Spikeball™ Major event arrives in Europe. Roundnet Toulouse, along with Spikeball Inc, are proud to present the tournament: set to take place on July 1st & 2nd. This landmark competition will not only bring together the most talented players from around the world but also signify the sport's rapid professionalization and burgeoning popularity in Europe.
As the number of official Spikeball™ Tour Stops continues to rise across Europe, the Spikeball™ Toulouse Major is a testament to the sport's meteoric growth on the continent.
Star player, Laura Kunzelmann of K2, competes in the World Championship
Photo by Corentin Bureau @yellowballcult
This highly anticipated tournament will showcase the best teams and players from around the globe, including reigning World Champions and USA Champions 2022, Clark Marshall and Buddy Hammon of Assistive Touch (both Spikeball sponsored players).
The participating teams at the Spikeball™ Toulouse Major represent the pinnacle of roundnet talent. Among the notable contenders are the undefeated German men's duo, Paul Siemer and Lukas Eisentrager of Eisentrager/Siemer, who have dominated European tournaments in 2023. Cole Model and Max Model of Hilltop bring their inspiring comeback story following ACL injuries, making them a team to watch from the United States. And all eyes will be on women's team, K2: Laura Kunzelmann and Katie Pierson, who recently beat the previously undefeated US team, TWINZ, in the Spikeball™ Salt Lake City Major finals.
Clark Marshall and Buddy Hammon (USA) become World Champions
Photo by Corentin Bureau @yellowballcult
French team Pour Combien?, consisting of Robin Florinda and Dorian Ameziane, is poised to build upon their success from last year, where they defeated Eisentrager/Siemer and secured a remarkable T-5 finish at the 2022 World Championships. And popular French team 'Puces&dives' - Natacha Alt and Inès Paysan, will also be hoping to make a deep run through the bracket.
Dorian Améziane of French team, Pour Combien
Photo by Corentin Bureau @yellowballcult
Roundnet continues its massive growth in Europe, with 17 official European national associations, and Roundnet Germany (official organisation) boasting over 100 local clubs and communities. The Spikeball™ Toulouse Major represents a significant milestone for the sport, showcasing its rapid professionalisation with substantial prize money, comprehensive live media coverage, and the participation of sponsored teams and players.
The Spikeball™ Toulouse Major is set to be an unforgettable experience for players and spectators alike. Don't miss the opportunity to witness the world's best roundnet teams competing at the highest level in the heart of Toulouse!
For more information and to stay updated on the Spikeball Toulouse Major, follow Spikeball Tour Series on Instagram.
The Championship will take place in Belgium on September 8-11, 2022
33 countries will participate, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, Egypt, USA and many European nations
On September 8th, 33 countries’ national squads will arrive at Park Molenheide, Belgium, for the first ever Spikeball Roundnet World Championship. In total there will be over 200 teams competing, cheered on by spectators and fans from all over the world. Each national squad is made up of five men’s teams, three women’s team and one mixed-gender team. One team is comprised of two players. The first ever world championship marks a significant moment in history for the sport of roundnet. Spikeball Inc. is the official equipment provider and title sponsor of the event.
French National Squad. Photo by Corentin Bureau @yellowballcult
What is roundnet? Where did it come from?
Roundnet is played two versus two and is very similar to beach volleyball: each team has up to three touches to return the ball back on the net. There are no sides or boundaries, and the game is played 360 degrees around the net. Watch this video to see it in action.
A common misconception is that ‘Spikeball’ is the name of the sport. The sport is in fact called ‘roundnet’ - Spikeball is the leading equipment provider for the sport and for the Spikeball Roundnet World Championship 2022.
The sport has been growing steadily for the past 15 years. In 2008, Spikeball Inc began creating high quality roundnet equipment and investing into the sport. As time went on, both Spikeball Inc and roundnet enthusiasts began setting up local tournaments on beaches and in parks. Fast forward a decade and there are hundreds of tournaments being hosted across the globe on a weekly basis, and a first ever world championship. Spikeball Inc runs the prestigious annual ‘Spikeball Tour Series’, which hosts events across the USA, Canada and Europe.
In 2020 the International Roundnet Federation was created to put the sport on the path to Olympic inclusion. This global governing body is a non-profit organization currently made up of 35 national roundnet federations. The inaugural world championship is a key milestone for the IRF and a much anticipated occasion for the entire roundnet community.
Clark Marshall (USA national team) competing in USA Nationals 2021
Thursday September 8th: Coed (mixed-gender) Championship
- Each country selects one coed team to compete
- This is a key event within roundnet that sets it apart from many other sports
Friday September 9th: Individual Championship
- Teams from each country play against each other to crown the top individual mens and womens teams in the world
Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th of September: Squad Championship
- National teams gain points and progress through the tournament as one squad
“I am so incredibly excited to be a part of the first ever Spikeball Roundnet World Championship. When I started the business back in 2008 never in my wildest dreams did I think there would be a world championship, let alone one with 30+ countries competing! This is such a testament to all of the work the players and organizers have been doing all over the world for years. I'm feeling grateful that Spikeball has helped play a part."
- Chris Ruder, CEO of Spikeball Inc
"I can't wait to see all the countries together in one place. There are people I've been working closely with for years that I'll be meeting for the first time at the event. The initial World Championship was planned for 2020, but Covid put a stop to that. Since then, the International Roundnet Federation and the member National Federations have grown tremendously. It will be amazing to see it all finally come together.”
- Jack Scotti, VP, Strategy & Sport Development at Spikeball Inc
Ruth Troughton and Nicole Fatt (GB National Squad) competing in Mallorca. Photo by Esaja Ekman @two_swedes
Spikeball: A Way Of Life? A Movement? Simply A Product?
22 hours. That’s how far a group of friends drove to compete in the Santa Monica Spikeball tournament this past Saturday. While there, I saw fathers kiss their newborns and hear their wives say, “Good luck!” as they walked out to compete. I met some recent graduate Spikeballers that are moving in with each other and becoming roommates. The level of ball-busting I heard could easily make you think those involved have known each other for years, even though they’d known each other a mere matter of hours. I heard fraternity brothers use grandiose terms such as “Spikeball is a way of life” and “Spikeball is a movement”. When we launched in 2008, I hoped you’d like the product enough to buy it. You would give us the money, I ship you the box and that's it. It would be a transaction and that would be it. Thankfully, I was very wrong. The stories that I’m hearing aren’t just from tournaments. A quick search online will yield photos of people playing at elementary and college graduation parties, a bachelor playing minutes before he walks down the aisle in an attempt to calm his nerves, a guy playing at basecamp of Mt Everest, and more. We receive emails from complete strangers telling me how Spikeball restored a strained relationship with a brother, a heartbroken father who lost a Spikeball-loving teenage son in a car accident, a soldier in Afghanistan telling me how it helped with morale, Moms thanking us for getting their kids outside and active again… These are powerful stories and Spikeballers are anxious to have theirs heard. We seem to be going through a strange evolution from ‘product company’ to ‘community company’. The product is simply a tool that helps build the community. This is partially manifesting itself in the form of USASpikeball.com, (the online home of the Spikeball community) but more so, it’s happening in real life. In response to this, we’re working on modifying our logo to include the words, “Join The Movement”. To hear more stories, I’m personally reaching out to customers to learn about them. Why do they play? Where are they from? What other sports do they play? How do they want to see Spikeball evolve? What makes them tick? I want the community to drive the future of the company. If you have ideas or just want to share your story, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Getting to know you, hear your stories, and watch friendships form has been incredibly gratifying. I’m not exactly sure where this evolution will take us, but I’m psyched to be a participant. Join the movement. Enjoy, SpikeballChris