In a promotional video for Spikeball, beach bros huddle around a tiny trampoline, skittering like crabs in anticipation. A yellow ball bounces up from the trampoline and the guys go wild, leaping and diving.
From the sidelines, Spikeball can look like mayhem but, like any sport, it's easy to forget appearances in the heat of gameplay. Getting in the thick of it is great fun, too, with opportunities to exhibit dramatic saves, deft maneuvers and withering putaways.
The object of the game is to score points by bouncing the ball off the trampoline in a way the opposing two-person team can't return. The mechanics are identical to volleyball but, instead of a net, there's a trampoline.
Spikeball setup is easy and takes about five minutes. Kits run from the basic ($53) to Spikeball Pro ($120), which comes with a sturdier frame for more consistent gameplay and textured balls so competitive players can put strategic spins on their serves.
For committed Spikeballers, there's the City of Trees Spikeball Tournament 2016 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Ann Morrison Park Saturday, July 30. The entry fee is $20.