Air hockey was first invented in 1969; after going through several revisions, the game was made available to the public for playing by the Brunswick Billiards company. Within a few years, air hockey tables became very popular and could be found in bars across America. Air hockey is a fun, challenging game where two players face off across an air hockey table and try to score points by pushing the puck into the opponent's goal.
To play a game of air hockey, you will need an air hockey table, two mallets and a puck. A mallet is simply a rounded handle attached to a flat (usually disc-shaped) surface. The pucks are made of resin pressed into thin discs, and can come in any color.
An air hockey table is basically just a smooth rectangular playing surface. It has rails on all sides to keep the mallets and puck from flying off the table. The two slots in the rail at either end of the table serve as goals. All air hockey tables have tiny holes in the playing surface through which air is pushed out; this enables faster play by reducing friction.
To play a game of air hockey:
- A coin is tossed to determine who will receive the puck first.
- The person who wins the toss will hit the puck from his/her side of the table to the opponent's side within seven seconds. The opponent has seven seconds to hit back the puck.
- The players should ensure that they don't place the mallet on top of the puck as this is a foul. When a player commits a foul, his opponent then takes possession of the puck.
- Touching the puck with any part of the player's body is also considered a foul.
- At all times the player should protect his/her goal and try to hit the puck into the opponent's goal.
- Players must hand the puck to their opponent if they hit the puck and cause it to leave the playing surface of the table.
- The first player who scores 7 points is declared the winner.