Bubble Sports: Attack of the Zorbs

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Everyone knows how to play soccer. You have two evenly matched teams trying to get a ball into the net on the opposing side.


Now, picture that exact same game but with each player covered, from waist to head in an air-filled, plastic orb called a “zorb.” By the way, full body contact is not only allowed, but encouraged, as the zorb almost completely protects players from injury. This is a bubble sport, an exciting activity that won’t drop the ball where fun is concerned.


The term “bubble sport” was coined by GeeseRabbit Inc., a local small business run by Mandy Gu and Edward Qian, two ambitious students currently studying at UW. After watching a video of a European game called “bubble soccer” in late 2013, both Qian and Gu decided to see if Canada was ready for zorbs to roll onto the playing field.


“At first, we were just going to try them out, and if it doesn’t work out, we’ll use them ourselves,” Gu said.


Initially, the zorbs procured by the two students were purely for self-entertainment. When other students and friends admitted to having a ball with the zorbs, a well-rounded plan formed in the minds of Gu and Qian.


“Because everyone loved them and they got a lot of attention, we were inspired to get more here and start our own business,” Gu said.


With the creation and success of GeeseRabbit Inc. in April of this year, Gu and Qian began rapidly expanding on the concept of bubble soccer. Among the many games the two have created, one such bubble sport stands out from the rest. A modified version of “king of the hill,” it has quickly become the second-most played bubble sport other than bubble soccer.


“The game is called ‘king of the bubbles,’” Qian said. “It’s essentially the same as king of the hill, with a designated area that players are trying to stay in, and whoever remains in the area at the end of one or two minutes becomes the king of bubbles.”


While the company hasn’t even been in existence for a year, GeeseRabbit Inc. has already provided the KW area with five exciting demonstrations of bubble sports. From large sporting events like a halftime show at a Toronto Argonauts and BC Lions game at the Rogers Centre in Toronto, to the annual Columbia Lake Canada Day celebration, Gu and Qian already have many in the community running in circles to sign up for a day of bubble sports.


While the group may not have any immediate events coming up where one could experience the joy of bubble soccer or king of the bubbles, rental rates are readily available for the many zorbs that GeeseRabbit Inc. has for public use. At $40 for the 10-hour use of an adult-size zorb and $30 for a 10-hour use of a child zorb, the temptation to get your friends and family together for a day of bubble sports is certainly un-ball-ivable.
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