Rock-It-Ball is a fast moving combat ball sport. It was developed in North Yorkshire (Great Britain) in 2005 and introduced to the wider audience in February 2006 at the Youth Sport Trust’s Sports Colleges Conference. There Rock-It-Ball attracted attention for its ability to increase participation amongst reluctant teenagers and youngsters. It is now being introduced to a quickly growing number of schools in Great Britain and was even asked to be a partner on the TOP Activity Program which is run by the Youth Sport Trust and supported by Sainsbury’s.
Schools across the United Kingdom are adopting Rock-It-Ball for a number of reasons. It has been shown to help drive participation amongst young people who do not normally take part in sporting activities. Players of all ages and abilities and most disabilities can enjoy success at different levels. It does not bring pre-conceptions from established sports (such as football or ice hockey)and it is therefore an ideal sport for the introduction of the Sport Education curriculum model. Materials for Rock-It-Ball and Sport Education have been developed by the Carnegie Faculty at Leeds Metropolitan University.
Rock-It-Ball is played by Rock-Iteers, using fast sports balls and ‘Rock-Its’. These are poles with moulded scoops on each end. Rock-It-Ball is also a very flexible sport and it can be played in a variety of formats, rules and games. However, in its "base" format, each team consists of 4 or 5 players depending on the size of the hall where Rock-It-Ball is played. With 4 players on each side there are 4 balls in the game; with 5 players there are 5 balls. Hitting a player or players of the other side with the ball scores points. A hit scores one point; but if the targeted player catches the ball, he or she gains two points.
The sport has spread very quickly through schools in Great Britain. In addition, it is also being used in some prisons and universities and the British military. It already has a National Governing Body, the Rock-It-Ball UK Association and an International Governing Body, the International Rock-It-Ball Federation which has been set up to cope with the increasing interest from other countries.
The most famous Rock-Iteer in the UK is Keith Chegwin.
As part of the development inaugural ‘world’ championships were held at the Dolphin Centre, Darlington in 2005. Winners were Team Chaos from Northallerton College from North Yorkshire. 2007 Carnegie Rock-It-Ball champions are Loughborough University.
The first club to be founded was "Tees Valley Spartans" in December 2006. The "Wearside Comets" followed as the second closely afterwards.
The first official World Cup organised by the International Rock-It-Ball Federation was held in the North East of England on June 3, 2007. Winners were Scotland. Runners up were Pakistan. Third place went to England and fourth place to India. Event host was Keith Chegwin.