Dear Sean,
Hello I am a manager for an after school program and last night we were playing 4 square when their was a dispute over who was out. Player 1 returned the ball and player 2 re-returned the ball before it bounced in their square but on the re-return she bounced it back into "player 1's" square who did not try to return it claiming that player 2 was for not allowing it to bounce there square. If you can help me settle this dispute so we can continue to enjoy the fun of 4 square it would greatly be appreciated. Thank you! -Annette, 11/8/07 11:19 AM

The way we play in Boston we allow people to hit the ball before it bounces. But this gets compicated. Think of it this way, Annette, here is our logic.

Its all about possession. So when the ball bounces in a square then only the owner of the square may hit the ball. Period. This is what keeps the possession clear for everyone on the court. If anyone else hits the ball before the owner of square can hit it first, we call that other person out (we call it Poaching, like killing an animal out of season).

This makes is more clear for your problem too. Essentially one of your players did not allow the ball to fall in a square before she hit it. That's fine with us. As long as the ball wasn't poached, its all fair play.

Hope this helps you out some, and makes the rules more clear for your kids.