Ready, set, spike.
Described by its founders as the child of volleyball and foursquare, Spikeball is hoping to be the next great American sport.
“Very similar to beach volleyball in that it’s played two-on-two, you have up to three hits per team to hit it back on the net, in which the other team is responsible for returning it, kicker is, it’s actually played 360 degrees around the net,” said Spikeball’s Chief Operating Officer, Scott Palmer.
For a brief time in the 80’s, it was sold as a toy. About 30 years later, Spikeball’s current CEO Chris Ruder acquired the rights and began selling sets online, part-time.
Eight years into the future, Spikeball now has eight full-time employees, including their Chief Operating Officer, Scott Palmer.
A North Central grad and Naperville resident, Palmer left corporate America to join the Spikeball crew, over two and a half years ago.
“It’s been an awesome journey. I appreciate everything my family’s been able to put up with, especially my awesome wife. It’s been a lot of late nights but we’re trying to build something awesome,” said Palmer.
Since then, Spikeball has steadily grown in popularity and recognition, even swimming onto your TV.
“Shark tank, awesome crazy experience, definitely a high point in both my life, my career, as well as the company,” said Palmer.
While on the show, they received a $500,000 investment from Shark Daymond John, by focusing on the potential Spikeball has to grow.
There are already 250,000 players nationwide; 5,000 of which are competitive and 1,000 who are nationally ranked.
But you don’t have to be a pro to enjoy the sport.
“My favorite thing about Spikeball, I’m not really good at many sports, but I feel like I’m okay at Spikeball. And I feel like it’s one of those things that you get better at pretty quickly,” said Peter Heald, an amateur Spikeball player.
Whether you’re playing casually or competitively, remember to keep your eyes on the ball.
Evan Summers Reports.
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