The sport of quidditch: An introduction

Quidditch (/ˈkwɪdɪtʃ/, previously known as Muggle Quidditch) is a full-contact coed ball sport inspired by the title sport in Harry Potter™ invented by J.K. Rowling. In the saga initially published in 1997, the sport is described as a game where players are wizards flying on broomsticks, trying to keep control of a single ball named Quaffle and throw it through the hoops to score while avoiding being hit by other balls called Bludgers, and a distinctive small ball called Snitch is to be caught to end the match.

In fact, this game was first translated into reality by a group of students in Middlebury School, Vermont, USA, in 2005, with key characteristics of hoops, balls, broomsticks, and gender inclusion remaining mostly unchanged. For 12 years since then, it has been developed and modified to become a complete sport distinct from fictional features in Harry Potter™. Nowadays, players of the sport are not necessarily fans or readers of Harry Potter™ but mostly those who were once curious and now are keen on the sport itself. Currently, there are roughly 10,000 quidditch players all over the world in more than 300 teams. The majority of the teams are from universities in North America, Europe and Australia, beside some from other countries including Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, South Korea, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Vietnam.

In April 2017, the word “quidditch” was officially recognised by Oxford dictionaries and thus became a noun as a real life sport, independent of Quidditch™ (with a capital Q as a name) created by J.K. Rowling. For that, this sport and its players are no longer subject to copyright issues regarding trademarked names under the ownership of the British writer and Warner Bros.

A more detailed article of the gameplay can be found on this page. Watch below a visual (impressive) introduction of the sport made by USQ, the official governing body of US Quidditch.

Although quidditch hasn’t made it into Olympics yet, player communities of the sport are rather organised. The highest governing association of quidditch is the International Quidditch Association, founded and run by representatives from national governing bodies of several countries with developed quidditch environments. For more details of quidditch on the global scope, go to this page.