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BOCCE BALL RULES
Bocce ball is a challenging game that requires thought, strategy, and skill. The beauty of bocce is that it brings families and friends together to enjoy a game that can be played by anyone. For a player new to the game, bocce ball rules are simple to understand and pick up.
Rules of play
1. Find a flat, level playing surface to act as the court. Packed dirt, gravel, or grass works best. Bocce ball rules stipulate that a regulation bocce court be 76 feet long and 10 feet wide, but open bocce can be played on any level playing surface.
2. Players split up into two teams with one, two, or four players on each team. Each team gets four bocce balls to divide equally among the players.
3. One team is chosen to start. A player from that team stands behind the foul line (which is 10 feet from the throwing end of the court) and throws a ball, which is called a "pallina" and is smaller than the other bocce balls, toward the opposite end of the court.
4. That same player then throws one of the larger bocce balls, or "boccia." The object is to get the boccia as close to the pallina as possible without touching it. Players may roll or lob the bocce but shooting (lofting the ball in the air beyond the center line of the court) is not allowed. Experiment with different styles to determine which is the most comfortable and advantageous for you.
5. Players from the opposing team then take turns throwing their bocce ball, attempting to get one closer to the pallina than the starting player's ball. Players may use their boccia to knock the other team's balls away from the pallina, or to knock the pallina closer to their team's balls. If they fail to come nearer to the pallina, the starting team has a chance to better its first attempt.
6. If the second team gets a ball closer to the pallina than the starting team without using all of their bocce balls players from the starting team then take their second turn.
7. Continue alternating team turns until all eight bocce balls have been thrown. The team with the ball closest to the pallina gets one point for each of its balls that are nearer to the pallina than the opposing team's best ball. No points are awarded for a tie.
8. The team that scored throws first to begin the next frame. If no points were awarded, the team that threw the pallina last begins the next frame.
9. Play as many frames as needed until one team has scored the number of points determined before the game. Traditional bocce ball rules set this point total at 12, though it can be adjusted however you like.