The Fascinating History of Dodgeball

A player clutches a ball while dodging three others at the Elite Dodgeball National Championships at Boston University on Aug. 17, 2017. (Photo by Stan Grossfeld/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Remember dodgeball? That dreaded game from elementary school gym class? Today, the sport has been banned in many public schools because the entire game is literally designed to allow the intimidating athletic kids to pick on the weak, nerdy kids in a gymnasium-set survival of the fittest battle. While scenes of cowering book-worms being pelted with rubber balls hurled by muscle-bound jocks are common sitcom and movie tropes, the history of the sport of dodgeball shows us that the game was really created to weed out the weak links. Let’s look at the fascinating and sometimes-gruesome history of dodgeball.