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Stickball: An Origin Story

Posted by Aurora Tights on
Stickball: An Origin Story

Stickball is a staple in Native American heritage history. Different Native American tribes play this game. Tribal elders would organize games of stickballs would settle disputes nonviolently. The game originated in Oklahoma and the South Eastern US.



The first telling of stickball was written in the 18th century but there is evidence that it was played long before that. Stickball back then would last several days. It would be an all night party filled with singing and dancing. They would also seek out guidance from higher powers. Before matches, players would paint their faces, which would allow for a more spiritual experience.




 Stickball is most similar to lacrosse. Stickball is a team sport where opposing teams use sticks to get the ball in the opposite teams goal post. You never touch the ball with your hands. You play it on a football field. Players use a stickball stick to throw the ball (traditionally made of deerskin) across the field. You can see a great example below.




There are three types of stickball games. One is a social game where you can use your hands and that includes men and women. The second is the ceremonial one pitting east against west and that is only played by men. Finally, there is a modern game played by men and women and the rules are determined by the tribe and place.

Stickball is a great way to have some fun, get exercise and learn a new game from a different culture. 


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