Hacky Sack is a popular alternative sport
April 5, 2010
by Jamie Santiago | Staff Writer
With his mouth slightly open, David Alexander pauses mid-kick and balances a Hacky Sack in concentration, as it sits on the tip of his shoe. After slowly moving the sack to the middle of his shoe, he jerks his right leg up, quickly bends his left leg at a 90-degree angle and kicks the sack toward an alert player next to him. The player then juggles the frumpy bag and repeats likewise.
The scene is reminiscent of a midair soccer kick replayed in slow motion during a match recap. It’s intense and the participant doesn’t take it lightly—until it ends.
When it’s clear and sunny outside, some City College students gather outside City Café or Rodda Hall North or near the Quad fountain to participate in a sport that doesn’t exactly have an official team — Hacky Sack.
In a game, a foot bag — commonly known as a Hacky Sack, is kicked around individually or by a group of people. In addition to the feet, other parts of the body, such as elbows, knees, and the head can be used to hit the sack. There is one principle of the game that makes it a delight and challenge.
According to Alexander, the game doesn’t start until every player in the game legally hits the sack at least once. It may sound simple, but it’s easier said than done, especially when there could be 10 or more people.
City College student Maxwell Warmington says he began playing Hacky Sack to pass time, and he notices improvement in eye-foot coordination and the use of his left foot.
“When I first played Hacky Sack I couldn’t really hit the sack with my left foot at all, and now it’s gotten a little better,” Warmington says.
Video game design major Joe Henderson says he plays approximately three times per week and has been playing since middle school. Not only does he enjoy exhibiting stylish techniques with his feet, he also enjoys the fact that Hacky Sack brings different types of people together, allowing him to make new friends and learn new things.
“The best part about Hacky Sack is everybody puts away their own predisposed likes and dislikes to play Hacky Sack,” Henderson says. “So you meet a lot of new people and then they introduce you to certain things.”
Alexander says the game is never competitive and sees it as a social gathering.
“Pretty much anyone can say, ’Hey you want to let me in on this hack?’ and they’d be happy to let you in,” Alexander says. “That’s just the sport.”