Where did water polo originate?
Where did water polo originate?
In the 1860's, and possibly before that, primitive games of "water football" were played in rivers and lakes in Great Britain. But it wasn't until 1870 that the London Swimming Association drew up official rules to govern the game. Originally it was thought that the game would provide something new for swimming galas. The term polo comes from the vulcanized, India rubber ball, which was used, in early games. In Hindi, the word "pulu", mispronounced by the English, was the word for ball. There is no historical connection between water polo and the game played on horses. The often reprinted illustration of players playing on barrels (below) was the from the imagination of the artist who had never seen the game being played.
The first recorded description of "aquatic football" concerned a match played in the open water, outside London on July 13th, 1876.
By 1879, keen observers of the game realized that if it were developed under proper conditions, it would prove of immense value as a pastime among swimmers.
Early games were generally exhibitions of brute strength and aquatic wrestling. Passing and dribbling were scarcely practiced and only infrequently attempted. Games were fought on individual lines: that is to say, each player considered it his sole duty, without regard to position, to score goals. A goal was scored by placing the ball, with two hands, on the top end of the tank. A favorite trick of these early games was to place the small India-rubber ball (which ranged from five to nine inches in diameter) inside the drawers, dive under the water and then "appear" again as near the goal as possible. "Appear" is the proper word, for in those days, the water in pools had no filtration systems, and was, shall we say cloudy. But this mode of scoring had its disadvantages, as the goalkeeper was permitted to stand on the pool deck and protect his goal as he saw fit. Should the forward come up too near the goal, he was promptly jumped on by the goalie.
In the mid 1880's, the game was revolutionized by the introduction of the "Trudgeon Stroke." This new swimming technique enabled the game to be a faster moving, more wide-open game, that involved more and faster swimming. Rules moved away from rugby to a soccer style of play. Goals became a cage of 10 x 3 feet and a goal could be scored by being thrown. Players could only be tackled when they "held" the ball and the ball could no longer be taken under water. A leather soccer ball replaced the small rubber ball. Source(s): http://www.lmhsaquatics.org/polo/history...
In British imperial India in the 1860`s. Some officers wanted to play a few chukkas, it was monsoon season. The rest is history!
Water polo orginated in England and Scotland and was played in large lakes with a ball made of Indian rubber. It was introduced in the 1900 olympics. Women's water polo was introduced in the 2000 Sydney olympics.
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