I’m sure many of you have heard about or even played striker ball with your classes. My students enjoy playing paddle striker ball with a couple of modifications.



For 20 students I set up two neighboring octagons with cones. Cones are spaced out about 8 paces. I also set up 4 cones between both games for students who are waiting to enter one of the octagons, much like 4-square. I place each paddle handle first inside of each cone, including the four cones for the students waiting their turn.

  • Send eight players to each octagon.
  • Each player is responsible for guarding a side of the octagon, much like a goalie in soccer.
  • Extra players go to the four cones to wait for an opportunity to enter the game.

Now that the setup is complete, allow me to explain the game.

The object of the game:

The object of the game is to strike a gator ball through another player’s goal using a foam paddle. At the same time, players are trying to block any ball shot at their goal.

Round 1:

  • Players must kneel or sit between their goals. This prevents them from entering the center of the octagon. All shots must be taken from between the cones (each goal) from the sitting/kneeling position.
  • When a goal is scored upon a player, that player exits the game and goes to the back of the line of players waiting to enter the game. The first player in that line takes the place of the player who just exited.
  • The player who just entered the game always takes the first shot. We refer to this as the serve.

Round 2:

  • Instead of sitting/kneeling, I allow players to stand. Prior to the round, we discuss why standing might be easier or more difficult than sitting.
  • After a few minutes of round two, you may notice players who decide to sit back down. I allow this to happen since it’s part of their personal strategy.

Scoring a goal:

  • A goal can not be scored in either of the goals to the immediate left or right of the shooter. We called this neighboring.
  • Height limit – all goals must be below the height of the cone. Any shot that goes above the cones is NOT a goal.

Players waiting in line:

  • Players standing in line may enter either game.
  • The first player in line takes the place of the next player who is out in either game. I like this because it naturally mixes up the groups.

Paddle striker ball is a fast-paced, action-packed game. My students love it! BTW – if you don’t have paddles, students can use their open hand to strike the ball instead.

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