Hardcourt bike polo is an increasingly popular urban sport, across Europe and around the world. As one of the European centers of hardcourt bike polo, Barcelona has a thriving population of dedicated and competitive bike polo enthusiasts that are not only good at what they do but also all around cool guys.
The Barcelona bike polo scene is an interesting mix of international and domestic clubs and amateur enthusiasts and is a friendly group of cool cats who just like having a good time. Several teams from Barcelona are active and competitive in the international hardcourt bike polo scene and have traveled to participate in various bike polo events across Europe. Barcelona bike polo teams, like Dirty Sanchez and El Club, are internationally recognized and often dominate the Barcelona and European hardcourt bike polo competitions.
One of the best cities in Europe for hardcourt bike polo enthusiasts, Barcelona solidified its place in the world bike polo scene by hosted the 2011 EHBPC (European Hardcourt Bike Polo Championships). In 2012 the Barcelona team Dirty Sanchez won 17th place in the EHBPC (European Hardcourt Bike Polo Championships) held in Paris and participated as a wildcard entry in the 2012 WHBPC (World Hardcourt Bike Polo Championships) held in Geneva. The famous Barcelona team El Club won 3rd place in the 2010 EHBPC and 4th place in the 2011 EHBPC.
Where to play… when to go…
There are 3 primary hardcourt bike polo courts in Barcelona: La Aspirina, El Templo, and Clot de la Mel. The most laid-back and best all-around court to go to for a new-comer to Barcelona or for any random tourist who just wants to check out the scene is La Aspirina. La Aspirina is an outdoor court, open to the public and is very easy to find. There are specific days of the week and times that the teams meet up to practice and have matches but generally speaking if you just go down there in the evening you are bound find something going on. Mondays nights are the best for newcomers to the sport or for those who want to give it a try – the locals are very friendly and are happy to loan out bikes and mallets for anyone who wants to give it a try.
How to Play Hardcourt Bike Polo
The rules of hardcourt bike polo are basic and pretty much anyone that can ride a bike can play the game. Each team has 3 players. The Players must remain on their bikes, they are not allowed to touch the ground, they can only make mallet-to-mallet or body-to-body contact with the other players and the mallet may not be thrown for any reason. One other important rule is that the bikes are only allowed to have one brake (front or back, but only one) or be a fixed gear bike.
The goal is to hit the ball with the end of the mallet (not the side) into the other team’s goal. The ball can be passed using the side of the mallet (called a shuffle) but goals can only be made using the end of the mallet (called a shot). The game continues until one of the two teams has scored 5 goals.
Where to stay in Barcelona for Hardcourt Bike Polo Players, Fans and Enthusiasts
If you’re coming to Barcelona to compete or participate in a hardcourt bike polo event in Barcelona and you need accommodation, you should check out the Sant Jordi Barcelona Hostels. Two of their Barcelona hostels in particular are perfect for hardcourt bike polo players and fans.
The Sant Jordi Hostel Gracia is a fixie Barcelona, fixed gear bicycle themed hostel that caters specially to a bike friendly crowd. Newly build and with modern installations, Sant Jordi Hostel Gracia is a designer boutique hostel with a hip trendy feel. Located in the Gracia neighborhood of Barcelona it provides a different atmosphere than your average downtown, city center hotel or hostel.
The Sant Jordi Hostel Sagrada Familia is ideal for those who want to be as close as possible to the most popular bike polo courts in Barcelona. Literally just up the street from La Apirina and El Templo, Sant Jordi Hostel Sagrada Familia hostel is a new hostel with hip, modern facilities and a young international vibe.
Ok… any of the Sant Jordi hostel locations are great options for accommodation in Barcelona: they all offer great facilities, excellent services and a hip international atmosphere for an affordable price.