Beating Your Friends at Foosball: A Beginner’s Guide

in Sport

Everybody wants to be better than their friends at something and foosball is a game that truly does give bragging rights to the victor.

To challenge pals knowing that you have a good chance of winning is a level of confidence many aspire to, and the glorious feeling of twisting a paddle and watching the ball fly into the goal is unparalleled.

With this beginner’s guide, you will be more likely to taste victory at this exciting game.

The rules

If you’re new to foosball, the rules are simple. Players placed on rods are spun to ‘kick’ a ball into the opponent’s net. Depending on the size of the table, there will be a scoring system such as first to ten, or you can work on a timed basis.

In official foosball, spinning – a rod completing a 360-degree turn without touching the ball – is illegal. Initial kick-off, or ‘serve’, is decided by tossing a coin, and subsequent serves are taken by the player who has just conceded a goal.

Get the best table for your home

To get better at foosball, you should consider investing in your own table. This allows you to practice more and challenge friends on your own table, effectively making it your home ground. Here’s a blog post on best foosball tables for different needs, abilities and sizes so that you can find the right one for you.

Knowing the feel and the turn of your table will give you the upper hand when you invite people to your home.

Keep control of your players

As mentioned, the act of spinning is actually illegal in official foosball rules. Of course, in friendly amateur competition with your friends you don’t need to adhere to such regulations but, in actual fact, not spinning will play to your advantage anyway.

Many see spinning as an advantageous technique, as it generates more power, but keeping control of your players and, in turn, the ball will see you more likely to score. Learning to pass between your players is tricky, but it will pay dividends more often than simply striking the ball as hard as possible.

Dedicate one hand to your goalkeeper

Maintaining one hand on your goalkeeper rod is a brave move to make, as it leaves only one hand for all of your outfield players, but it will stop you conceding so many goals. The ability to react adequately to opposition shots, no matter where they come from on the pitch, is a useful one. Practice quickly swapping your free hand between rods so that you can transition the ball through the midfield to your strikers and into the opposition goal.


Finally, the simplest of all is that you should practice. Find somebody in your house willing to be your training partner or, if you can’t do that, keep asking friends around as much as possible. The more you play, the better you will get, so do not get disheartened if you lose a lot of games, to begin with. Foosball is a simple game yet tricky to be extremely good at, so stick in there.

Image Credits: Bao Truong

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