You May Not Have Received Your Hogwarts Letter, But You Can Still Play Quidditch
Sports

You May Not Have Received Your Hogwarts Letter, But You Can Still Play Quidditch

A look into the Muggle world’s most magical sport.

726
Phoebe VanGelder

20 years ago, the world was introduced to a young wizard. 7 books, 8 movies, and 400 million copies sold worldwide later, the inescapable magic has touched lives in a way that surpasses fictitious fantasy. Our culture has become enthralled by “Harry Potter," and millennials have loved the books and movies from a young age.

But while those of us down here are still waiting for our Hogwarts letters, there's a sport waiting to bring a little magic to the Muggle world: Quidditch.

Everyone in our community has a reason for why they started; a love of "Harry Potter," pure curiosity, or an opportunity to poke fun at nerds, but regardless of why you come out, each of us stays for the same reason: the love of the sport.

So here is everything you need to know about Quidditch.

What is Quidditch?

Quidditch is a co-ed full contact sport that has grown over the past 11 years into a competitive, international phenomenon made up of four magic inspired positions, 3 hoops, and over 300 teams in the US alone. It has a strange and unique mix of elements from rugby, dodgeball, basketball, and football. The game looks chaotic and disorganized at first, but once familiar with it, Quidditch is one hell of a sport to play and watch.

(And for the young ones, there is also a kid version called Kidditch)

Do You Fly?

Players on the pitch are required to keep a PVC pipe between their legs at all times in the game to replicate a broom. The PVC (which used to be a real broom before the bristles caused too many injuries) originally did start as a homage to the flying equipment used in the Harry Potter series. As the sport has evolved and grown to be more athletic, however, the 'broom' has been kept as a handicap. Soccer and basketball have dribbling to keep players from charging down the field, Quidditch requires all players to keep a stick between their legs during the game.

Title 9 ¾

Quidditch prides itself on being a co-ed, inclusive sport. Title 9 ¾ of the USQ Rulebook states that only a maximum of 4 players who identify as the same gender may be on the pitch at any given point in the game. That means at least 2 of the players on the pitch at any given time must be of a minority gender to ensure that non-male players receive the same opportunities on the pitch.

The sport focuses on promoting respect for each player regardless of gender identity and leveling the playing field not only in sports but in every aspect of society. This rule allows female and non-binary players a fair chance to shoot, score, hit, tackle, and generally prove how badass they really are.

Basic Rules

Tackling has very serious guidelines to keep players safe. It can only be initiated as one-arm hits from the front and only between players of the same position i.e. Chasers and Chasers, Beaters and Beaters, etc. Players are also only allowed to come in contact with players who are in possession of a ball. Players may stiff-arm, annoy, and grapple with other players of their position without a ball but nothing more.

Each player is also required to wear a mouth guard during gameplay and either a white, black, green, or yellow headband to signify position.

Every Shot Needs a Chaser

Objective: Score goals

Ball: Quaffle

Headband: White

Chasers are perhaps the most physical players in the sport of Quidditch. There are 3 Chasers on the pitch per team at any given time in a game. Their main objective is to throw the Quaffle (a slightly deflated volleyball) to score points through 1 of the 3 hoops positioned at either side of the pitch. Each goal is worth 10 points. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins so scoring is priority #1 for Chasers.

For most teams, there are three types of Chasers: The “big guy" who uses his size and weight to take down any opponent, the “fast guy" who uses his speed to evade players of the other team and get to the hoops, and finally a female player, who is utilized differently by each team and region.

They're a Keeper

Objective: Score and block

Ball: Quaffle

Headband: Green

Keepers basically glorified Chasers. The Keeper is the goalie of Quidditch who, on defense, has special privileges to help them block the other team from scoring. A special area in front of the hoops is designated as a “Keeper Zone" or a place in which the Keeper cannot be disturbed by other players. In the event of a turn-over and on offense, the Keeper gains possession of the ball and leads the Chasers down the field to score.

On defense, players rely on their Beaters, interference, and physicality to stop the other team from scoring.

Fantastic Beats and Where to Find Them

Objective: Gain control of the Bludgers and knock people out of the game

Ball: Bludger

Headband: Black

Beaters are the clever devils of the game. Although athleticism is definitely important, it is intelligence and strategy that drives the Beater game. There are 2 Beaters on the pitch during a game, typically a male and a female known as “Beater Pairs" or “Beater Partners." The Beaters are the first line of defense, armed with Bludgers (slightly deflated dodgeballs) they can hit any player on the pitch with their Bludger in order to momentarily take them out of the game. Players who are hit with a Bludger must drop any ball they are carrying, dismount from their brooms, and run to touch their own hoops before they can rejoin the game.

How Does the Snitch Work?

Objective: Catch the Snitch

Ball: Well, it's really more of a person

Headband: Yellow/gold

While we don't have a tiny, golden flying ball to chase around the pitch, we do have a Snitch, a non-partisan player in golden capture-the-flag shorts, enter the game at 18 minutes. Seekers from either team use wit, speed, and size to attempt to grab the tail off the Snitch Shorts. While a catch in the Harry Potter series is worth 150 points, in the real-world version of Quidditch it amounts to 30 points and ends the game. The difficulty of Seeking is in the battle between players. A Seeker only wants to catch the Snitch if their team is either winning or within 30 points of their opponent to ensure their team wins after the catch. If both teams are in range and capable of winning, it is an all-out war between opposing Seekers to catch the Snitch first. Snitches come in all shapes and sizes and either run from or wrestle with Seekers to keep them from catching. Every 7 minutes a Snitch remains on the pitch, a handicap is applied to aid the Seekers. Many Seekers also play other positions for the first 18 minutes of the game to feel more important.

Which House are You?

Put away those green and red robes because I am sorry to say, dear nerd, we do not play based on the houses of the series. Both college and community teams from all across the globe rep their own team's colors and typically a name that relates to their university or well, anything else they would like.

Some teams do pay respects to our inspiration with names like The Dobbies, Horntails, and many other Harry Potter references but more and more teams are getting away from the world of Harry Potter to embrace the unique sport Quidditch has become in the athletics world. And although we take our sport seriously, we try not to take ourselves so. After all, we do play a sport that was born from a children's book (I say lovingly).

The community doesn't discriminate between Slytherins, Ravenclaws, Gryffindors, Hufflepuffs or those who know nothing of Harry Potter and have no idea what those four words mean. Players can have 20 years' worth of sports experiences behind them. They may have never thrown a ball before. They can be male, female, somewhere in between or nowhere within.

And almost every college in the US has a team!

A word of advice I received from my friend and West Regional Event Coordinator Jessica Ward to those just starting or on the fence about joining “just go to a few practices and give it a shot! You never know how it'll impact your life. It takes patience and tenacity, but every second is worthwhile."

You can learn more about Quidditch or find a team near you here.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

This Survey Shows How Quarantine And Drinking Relate, And I Can't Say I'm Surprised

"5 o'clock somewhere" is more of a guideline now than ever.

As it stands, and my friends and I are finally 21. We're extremely excited to be able to go out to bars and "get lit" as the kids say, but due to the pandemic, all of our plans have been put on hold. We'd rather wait and go when it's safe than risk spreading the infection and hurting our loved ones. So, we've all been quarantining apart, getting on the occasional wine zoom call. This made me wonder if anyone else our age were doing the same thing.

Then, I discovered this survey: We Surveyed Millennials And Gen Z About Their Quarantine Drinking Habits — Cheers. Here are 3 things that I discovered through the survey results.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because Those Hormones Aren't Gonna Balance Themselves

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

It's common knowledge that your hormones impact practically every aspect of your body. Weight gain, acne, mental health... it's all related to your hormonal health. If your life is treating your body like the superstar it is, your endocrine glands should produce the perfect amount of each hormone to keep you running like a well-oiled machine. This is a nice thought, sure. In our current society, even the most balanced person you know may be missing an important aspect of respecting their body. Things like sleep, stress, diet, exercise, and a busy pace of life can throw hormones off balance and negatively impact your general wellbeing. Sometimes these imbalances are noticed right away, while other times they can be smaller — annoying, but not as obvious.

Keep Reading... Show less

One of the biggest discomforts I initially had with the stay-at-home order was feeling trapped and isolated from what was going on outside the walls of my house. Add that to living in a massive city, where social distancing is nearly impossible when doing something as simple as walking down the street.

Keep Reading... Show less

There is no such thing as a defined beauty industry. For those who believe so, it's time to open your eyes and look around you. Chilling in LA, Beauty Beez has been marketing the beauty industry towards people of color. Not to mention, Beauty Beez is a Black-owned beauty store. They have their own beauty bar that provides threading, waxing, facials, and braiding!

With the client at the center of the experience, our diverse group of professional and knowledgeable beauty experts are able to effectively educate and assist, while you explore. - Beauty Beez

You bet their fabulous mission statement was created by a female entrepreneur. Her name is Brittney Ogike and she is a mompreneur with a career in sports management. Beauty Beez came to life through mere observation or the lack of.

Keep Reading... Show less

I've always been a picture hoarder. No matter what happens with someone or how many pictures I have of the same thing, I hate deleting pictures. They all serve as memories to me, which is something I think is super important.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

These Phoebe Buffay Outfits Prove She's A '90s Fashion Icon — We're Replicating EVERY Single One

In case you needed another reason to love our favorite coffee shop singer.

NBC

I've always been described as the Phoebe of my friend group — not just for being a vegan, animal-loving people pleaser, but also for the false sense of confidence in my singing and athleticism.

I consider it a compliment to be labeled a Phoebe. Besides her general warmth, I was always drawn to her hippy-chic vibes and passion for environmentalism before it was even cool to be vegan or to care about the planet. The way she carelessly ran through parks flailing her limbs without a care mimicked her effortlessly eccentric style.

Keep Reading... Show less

'Tis the season for wedding fun and if you're hosting or helping plan a bachelorette party for the bride-to-be, you're going to want it to be a blast. Whether it's a social distance soiree or a virtual party, games will always spice up the time with the gals, so if you're looking for a fun and easy one to get the party started (and everyone drunk), this game is for you.

What's the name of the game? "Drink If: Bachelorette Party Edition." Here's how it works.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Talked To My Friend About Her Cystic Fibrosis And Wow, CF Patients Are WARRIORS

Not many people can say they've had a double lung transplant.

Alissa Katz

Forty percent of the United States lives with a chronic disease. These diseases are unique in their own way, but one thing is the same — every individual who lives with a chronic condition faces obstacles because of their disease.

Not only do these illnesses require a lot of education for the individuals who have them, but for the community as a whole. The more we as a society know about these diseases, the more well-rounded (and ideally, helpful) we'll be. If anything, we'll have a greater appreciation for the strength individuals with chronic conditions show on a daily basis.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments