Social Media Helped Turn Teqball from Garage Game to Global Sport: ATR Extra

Teqball co-creator Victor Huszar describes the origins of the game and why it’s proving to be so popular in this OpEd.

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byViktor Huszar

Teqball is the brainchild of three Hungarians – Gábor Borsányi, Gyuri Gattyán and me.

Our teqball journey was inspired by the memories of growing up playing football, a sport we all share a passion for. But as we’ve grown older, time has become more precious and we no longer have the luxury of spending whole Saturday afternoons playing the sport as a big group of friends.

When our free time did start to become less readily available, we began discussing new ways to stay active and satisfy our competitive natures. After several months of contemplation, we decided that a game we played growing up – where we used a football on a table tennis table – was something we should explore.

We recognised that there would need to be fundamental changes to make it work, so we immediately started testing new concepts. At the heart of this was developing a curve on our now world-renowned Teq table. This allows the ball to bounce toward the players and therefore ensure a natural flow to each rally.

And with that, the idea for teqball was born.

It took us a few years to create the final version of the Teq ONE table. It is now one of three types of Teq table, but remains the one used for all major competitions.

Explosive Growth

During our years of development, we created rules for the sport of teqball whilst we played it together in our garages. Getting this far was an achievement in itself and at this point we could not even imagine that, five years down the line, teqball would have transformed from a garage game to a global sport. In fact, we now have players in more than 100 countries and four million followers on social media.

We’re humbled by the passion people are showing for our sport. Teqball is less than 10 years old, but the International Teqball Federation (FITEQ) was ranked as the seventh best performing International Federation on social media in the recent BCW report. And if you rank non-Olympic sports, teqball is the second best performing International Federation.

It has been a whirlwind journey so far and the exciting part is that we’re only at the beginning. We already have more than 90 National Federations and 2,400 clubs, but these are numbers we want to grow even further in the coming months.

Social Media Key to Our Success

Our development as a sport owes a lot to our engagement with players and fans on social media, particularly during the past year with the restrictions of COVID-19. The way in which people are consuming sport is changing and we have capitalised on the new digital age to inspire people to become more active through playing teqball.

Our content across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and TikTok has been very effective in capturing people’s imaginations. When they see David Beckham, Ronaldinho, Lionel Messi and even Justin Bieber playing teqball, they instantly want to give it a try. This is the magic of social media – it allows for natural and organic growth, which is very important for us, but does so in an accelerated way.

Inclusivity and Inspiration

We are able to convey the values of teqball to the world through our digital platforms and remind people that age, gender and ability should have no impact on their ability to practise sport. We are able to share a message of inclusivity, empower our para-sport community and inspire the next generation to be more active.

Our social media strategy has helped teqball build a loyal and passionate online community, which is embracing the culture of sharing content. We love to repost videos from the teqball family around the world and demonstrate that it really is a sport that can be played anywhere – whether you’re on a beach, in a city centre or at the top of a mountain.

As we look forward, social media will remain a core part of FITEQ’s strategy for the global development of the sport. We will continue to harness the power of digital media to tell people all around the world the teqball story. We have seen how building awareness on social media translates into people playing teqball and as we focus on growing participation, we will find new and innovative ways to engage players and fans.

Victor Huszar is a co-creator of teqball and the CEO of the International Teqball Federation. You can find him on Twitter @ViktorHuszar1

Content presented by the International Teqball Federation