House Games

Acknowledgements and special thanks to my two good friends Jim & Shaun.

Spare Room Hand Tennis

Objective: To score points by leaving the ball totally dormant in the opposition’s ‘zone’

-The score to be reached is decided between the two players at the start of the game.

The Court: Any room, anywhere, any shape, any size – The origin of the game was based in the ‘Spare Room’ of my previous flat which was very much kept as a place to store my junk – this consisted originally of a broken fruit machine, a couch no longer suitable to sit on and various other bits of furniture and stuff I didn’t wanna keep, but couldn’t be arsed to take to the local tip.

The central line of the court is created by placing a length of cable/wire/string, whatever you can find, across the centre of the cleared area of the room. This should be placed approximately halfway across the centre of the room in such a position that both/all players are happy with. Loops can be left when laying this line, however the centre of any loop is automatically designated a no scoring area.

All hits must be made with the palm side of the hand or fingers in a downward direction in order to cause the ball to bounce against the floor – the ball continues to remain in play as long as it is bouncing.

All shots made with the back of the hand must be made in an upward direction to put the ball in the air.

Any shots made with the palm of the hand, in an underarm motion, unless the ceiling is hit by the ball, are invalid and result in a penalty to be taken – as do all attempts to kick the ball.

The ball can touch any part of the body, however the body cannot be used to nudge the ball into the other sector/zone, but can bounce of the body unintentionally in order to score a point. – The exception to this is the head, which can be used to header the ball.

You are allowed any amount of touches to the ball to keep it bouncing downwards whether in your sector or not, but your feet must never leave your zone.

Once the ball has stopped and no longer bounces, a point is scored.

If the ball lands without bouncing out of the Goal (Plastic Stacking Storage Boxes, indicated in Blue and Red on the Illustration) in the opposing player’s zone, then 2 points are awarded at ANY stage of the game.


A penalty is taken by the opposing player standing aside, while you aim to bounce the ball into their goal – The ball must bounce before going into the goal and cannot bounce out.

Any ball that continues to bounce in the goal CAN be bounced out by the player who keeps that goal during normal play – but not during penalties.

The ball is ‘out of play’ if it lands on any object in the room which it cannot be bounced off, and remains. If the ball rolls or bounces off any of these objects, back into the playing zone, it is then considered to be back in play.

If the ball lands behind any object where it cannot be bounced or in areas that are cut off from the central play zone, then they are out of play, although if you can bounce off these surfaces, you can bring the ball back into play again here.

Half time is set by the first person who reaches half of the total agreed score – at this point the players swap sides.

The cable/divider often gets moved or shunted during normal play –it is to be left in this position until half time and/or full time.

If the cable curves and does not reach the edge of the room, an imaginary continuation of this curve defines the playing area – if the cable curves beyond the point of being able to define this line, the cable/divider can be reset as well.

Any ball can be used to play this game.

The Step Game.

Objective: Reach the agreed amount of point between players to win the game.

You throw the ball and it must hit the top step, either the back or the bottom of this step.

If you do not hit this step you score nothing, unless you have bounced the ball out of the goal. (A basket lying on it’s side at the top of the stairs)

Once it has hit this step, you score a point for each step – Including the top step – it bounces on until it either stops, or reaches the bottom – This game can also be played with optional objects on the steps (any object – whatever happens to be left on the stairs)

If the ball hits EVERY step on the way down – then you score a point for each step and get another go.

If the ball is bounced out of the basket/ goal – then any steps you hit also score double points.

The twist ~ You have 3 lives – If the ball goes onto the landing and does not come back onto the stairs, you lose one.

If you lose all 3 lives, you can no longer take any more turns – However any remaining players must still beat your score, before their lives run out.


Each person may take a turn until all their lives are expired – I.e, If the agreed winning score is 50 and player 1 has scored 51, but Player 2 or 3 is yet to take their turn, they can take this turn, and beating a score of 51 will also win the game.

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