Topend Sports Logo

Eclipse Ball

The new sport of Eclipse Ball was created by Donald Benson from Grant, Michigan USA in 1985. Eclipse Ball is a Co-ed Team Racquet and Ball Sport created in America. Eclipse Ball is played with 2 to 6 players per team on a Volleyball court. It is a game of vigorous volleys that combines aspects of Volleyball, Badminton and Tennis with it's own unique rules.

The lightweight white and black Eclipse Ball aids in tracking and enhances the visual aspects of the game. Eclipse Ball Game rules give player's second chances in passing the ball to encourage participation, create interaction and teamwork while building skills and having fun. 

Equipment Required: volleyball court with net, Eclipse Ball Rackets for each player, one 6 inch Eclipse Ball.


AMERICA'S TEAM RACQUET & BALL SPORT - Sharing the fun since 1994 


One Eclipse Ball , one Eclipse Racquet with wrist tether for each player, and a volleyball net on a volleyball-sized court, indoors or out doors.  We suggest taping off player zones to prevent confusion for younger players. Eclipse Ball uses the standard volley ball net height.


1) Choose teams:  4 to 6 players per side, on a volley ball sized court with net. Team size can be larger if space is increased. If there are 1 or 2 players per side, use a badminton size court. Players are highly encouraged to stay within their area, we recommend 3 in front, 1 in the middle, and 2 in the back. Each player uses a racquet and must use the wrist tether for safety.  

2) Volley for serve: a team member hits the ball over the net and the volley begins, the ball must pass over the net 3 times before the volley can be won. The winning team serves. For the next game, the team that lost the previous game serves first. 

3) The serve must be from 3/4  court or back, depending on size and the skill of the server 1/2 court is acceptable. In Eclipse  Ball the ball must be served underhand. 

4) If the ball goes over the net and is inbounds, it is good regardless of whether it touches the net or not. 

5) There is only one second chance in a lifetime on the serve.  

6) In Eclipse Ball, on the line is always inbounds. 

7) Only the serving team can score, except in a 'Play It!'  situation. If a play is in question there is usually a re-serve, or the rule is in favor of the underdog.  

8) Players rotate when the service is won, rotation is clockwise, as in volleyball. 

9) Games are to 21 points, half games are to 11, a skunk is 11 to 0.  The game must be won by 3 points and 'Game Point!'  must be called when the winning point is served. 

10) Players may not score on a double hit (set themselves up). However, another player can set them up. 

11) The ball can bounce inbounds once any number of times between hits, with only 2 consecutive hits per player. Passing of the ball between players is unlimited. 

12) The ball can bounce twice inbounds, one time, per side, per volley. The second double bounce results in a loss of serve or point, depending on which team was at fault.   

13) For recovery, the teams have 3 consecutive bounces and 3 consecutive hits to bring out of bounds balls under control and back into play.  

14) Players must not go under the net or in any way enter the other team's court. There is a one foot grace zone for the racquet crossing over the net. 

15) If a team fails to call 'Play It! on an opposing team's fault, and keeps the ball in play, the game is continued as usual, with only the serving team being able to score. 

16) 'Play it!'  must be called by the team member who decides to keep the ball in play when the opposing team is at fault. The player calls 'Play It! as the ball passes over the net. The team winning the volley scores the points regardless of who served.  'Play It!'  points are worth 2 points instead of 1 and can accumulate by the addition of 2 points each time there is a fault and 'Play It!' is called.  

playing eclipse ball playing eclipse ball


Eclipse Ball was created to have fun while playing a game that builds confidence. It is a game where the non-athletic player can be on a more equal status with the athletic.  Eclipse Ball it is a true coed sport. In Eclipse Ball a light touch is as important to the strategy of winning as a fiercely hit return. It is a game designed to have the camaraderie of volleyball, the spontaneity of badminton, and the excitement of tennis, with rules designed with fun and action in mind.

The fundamental ideas behind Eclipse Ball are a desire for a game with vigorous volleys that aren't terminated easily and second chances that can extend play even longer.

The 'Play It'  rule is a great addition for those who wish to add an extra edge to the game, when there are 2,4,6,8,or more points on the line, the level of excitement really increases! The players use a racquet as well their hands, heads, feet or other body parts to keep the ball in play.  It is against the rules to catch the ball and throw it. Teamwork and passing the ball between players is encouraged. 

During play the ball is allowed to bounce once inbounds between hits any number of times, and to bounce 2 times inbounds between hits once per side, per volley. 


In the case where a ball first hits inbounds and then lands out of bounds, the returning team has a grace of three bounces to put the ball back in play.  Bounces off the wall, bleachers, etc. are counted.  Once a player hits the out of bounds ball, their team has three additional bounces for each time it is hit, to gain recovery.  If a wildly hit ball lands out of bounds on the opposite team's side, the same rules apply, however the players may not cross under the net or otherwise enter the opposing team's court.  The other team may not touch or interfere in any way with the recovery. Note: a player recovering the ball may not handle or hit the ball more than 3 consecutive times out of bounds and 2 consecutive times in bounds. 


The idea for the black and white ball came from my Grandfather, who was a baseball pitcher in the early 1900s.  In those days, he often used an old trick and smeared black on part of the ball.  This gave the pitched ball a corkscrewing appearance as it went spinning through the air.  The black graphic patch on the Eclipse Ball ball uses this unique visual effect to add fun and enjoyment for those watching and playing the Eclipse Ball game. 

We started playing Eclipse Ball over 40 years ago on our front lawn.  Eclipse Ball has evolved from vigorous volleys and dinner table debates, to this set of rules and thousands of kids and adults playing Eclipse Ball in the United States and around the world.  We hope you enjoy 'Playing It!'  and having fun as much as we still do!

more information: website

Rate this Sport

What do you think about this 'sport'? Please rate it on its potential.


Related Pages

send us a comment Any comments, suggestions, or corrections? Please let us know.


This information about new sports is presented as provided by users of this site. No copyright infringement is intended, please let us know if you have objections to anything published here so it can be rectified. See more: Disclaimer.

New Sports

New sports are being created all the time. Check out our list of over 300 new sports submitted by visitors to this site. If you want to submit a new sport, check out our guide first.

Sport Extra

Check out the 800+ sports in the Encyclopedia of Every Sport. Well not every sport, as there is a list of unusual sports, extinct sports and newly created sports. How to get on these lists? See What is a sport? We also have sports winners lists, and about major sports events and a summary of every year.

 → How to Cite