Pétanque, similar to bocce, is one of the world's fastest growing outdoor sports. Simple to learn; challenging to master.
- What is Pétanque ?
- Why is Pétanque the Ultimate Social Sport ?
- What are the Rules of the Game ?
A distant relative of horseshoes and a cousin to the Italian game of bocce, pétanque developed in France in the early 1900’s. It is one of Europe’s most popular outdoor games and is growing fast in the US, Canada, Australia, and Asia. It is also a professional sport.
The aim is to toss a number of hollow steel balls (boules) as close as possible to a small target ball, called a jack or cochonnet (meaning "piglet" in French). Players take turns and the team that ends up nearest to the target ball, once all balls are played, wins.
While in horseshoes the aim stake is fixed, pétanque’s target ball may be hit at any time, which can completely turn around the score at the last second. And whereas bocce calls for a smooth court, pétanque is played on a rougher, more informal surface.
Why is Pétanque the Ultimate Social Sport ?
- Way to meet neighbors and make new friends
- Plenty of time for chat
- No special athletic ability need
- Good sport for grandparents and grandchildren
- Ideal pick-up sport: come alone, with partner, or with family
- All ages and abilities, play from a wheelchair
- Teams informally formed and reformed
- Free, no club or game fees
What are the Rules of the Game ? (from Pétanque America)