”Cantabrian palas ” game consists of a pair of wood rackets and a tennis ball. The objective is to keep the ball in the air without dropping it or giving the highest number of hits, as it is a cooperative game.
Some authors thinks that the discoverer of “Palas cantabras” was Mariano Pérez Fernández in 1928. The first players used to play with the balls falling from the Tennis Club of “La Magdelena”, but the ball couldn't bounce on the sand so the game would be hitting the ball racket to racket, by demonstrating the ability of the players. Nowadays, “palas” game is a show in beaches of Santander, with certain differences. In ”El Camello” game is played with short shots, or longershot in “Piquío” and middle-shot in “Concha-Rhin”.
”Cantabrian palas”, can play a minimum of 2 players and a maximum of 4 or 5. Each player has a role: one is the attacker and the other is the defender . The attacker hits hard to the ball towards the defender, who acts as a wall, returning the ball to his/her teammate easily and well placed to let him or her make a good reattach.
Racket grip The grip used is called “Universal grip”. It consists in closing the fingers on the grip and with the thumb between the index finger and the others. With this type of grip you can make all the shoots.
Defensive Position: a defender place his feet at the same height as his shoulders, semi-bent knees, body bent a little forwards, head up, facing forward and the racket at a height between the head, shoulder and chest. In case of a right-handed player, for all those balls that come from half body to the right you make forehand hit, and all those half come from your body to the left, make the backhand hit.
players rarely have to move his feet, especially when they shot. Attackers often have more movement and show more skills and agility to return all balls to the right place. In short, “las palas” is a traditional fun game from Cantabria, whose only requirement is to have a racket, a ball and partner to play with.
What is “palas game”? Where did the first players used to play palas? In which beaches of Santander can you see palas players? What roles are in the game? What do they do? When do a right-handed player make a forehand hit?