What do you get when you cross Jake Gyllenhaal from the 2001 movie, “Bubble Boy,” and combine that with the FIFA World Cup?
Florida Gulf Coast University Campus Rec will be hosting an indoor bubble soccer event on Thursday, Oct. 23 from 8-11:45 p.m. on the main floor of Alico Arena.
“Basically the goal is that you can play soccer somewhat aggressively because you can’t really get hurt when you’re in a bubble,” said Carl Bleich, Campus Rec’s intramural sports & special events coordinator. “It is pretty exciting. We’ve seen it all on YouTube, so we’ll have our own people out there and we’ll be releasing our photos and videos.”
If you haven’t already seen the viral videos on YouTube or Vine, Bubble Soccer is exactly as it sounds: playing soccer in a bubble suit.
However, unlike soccer’s 11-player lineup, bubble soccer requires five people per team, no goalkeepers, and the game goes for 10 minutes. Oh yeah, you’re also playing with the top-half of your body in an “orb.”
“This is a first time for us and we’re really excited to see how it goes,” Bleich said. “We offer a lot of different things that with fitness and classes but we’ve never offered something like this. Everything we offer is somewhat non-contact and this is been the first time ever that is a little different in that aspect. “
In order to accommodate the high-demand, the event will offer one 10-minute game per team as opposed to a tournament style event. Teams will be coed and consist of (at least) two men and two women.
“Students are going to be able to sign up for 10-minute time slots,” Bleich said. “We got the idea and wanted to accommodate as many people as possible. It doesn’t sound like a long time, but it is when you’re running around in a bubble. So instead of a tournament, where someone wins, everyone just gets one time slot so we can accommodate everyone.”
Bleich said that Campus Rec will be renting the “orbs” instead of buying them for a league due to lack of storage and American retailers that sell them.
“We finally found a company this summer that rents them and that seemed like the perfect fit,” Bleich said. “We could use them for a night and not have to worry about storing them. They’re big and bulky and we already have a lot of things in storage.”
Bleich added that if the event is successful and the issue of storage and retailers is solved, there’s a strong possibility of bubble soccer returning as a regular event.
Sign ups are now open on IMLeagues.com and are filling up fast.