Armed and ready to play Tak Ball, a stunning game
By Sinsiri Tiwutanond
BANGKOK (Reuters) - The rules are simple: throw a ball into the goal to score a point. But what makes this game unlike any other is that all the players are armed and ready with stun guns.
It's Ultimate Tak Ball, the brainchild of a few hardcore sports fanatics who say it is the sport of the future and are in Bangkok for an exhibition game.
Each game consists of three periods that last for 7 minutes each, with two teams of four players each. Any player in possession of the 24-inch medicine ball is open to unlimited shocking by the players on the opposite team.
The stun guns pack 3 to 5 milliamps of electricity, which is only about 10 percent of the power of the taser stun guns used by police. Fired on contact with an opponent, the guns produce a twitching feeling, according to players.
"It never gets better, you just get less afraid of the stun," a smiling Damien Ryan, 24, said during a break in a match in Bangkok. "But it's one of the best feelings ever."
The game was thought up by friends Leif Kellenberger, Eric Prum and Erik Wunsch, who were trying to come up with the extreme of extreme sports when the idea of stun guns popped up. Planning for the game began some four years ago.
Players on the teams in Bangkok were all originally paintball professionals who had been touring together for a while, and so were already accustomed to the agility and pain required in an extreme sport created for adrenaline junkies.
The switch to Ultimate Tak Ball, or UTB as they call it, was easy. Continued...