The state of these two sports is such that most people use this interchangeably, even frequent players. Whether you just wanted to know the differences or you actually want to play a game of Squash or Racquetball, here are a few points that will help you to distinguish between the two.
Squash vs Racquetball: Basic Comparison
The Equipment size and differences
Now both these games are played with racquets in closed courts but the ball that these games are played with is one of the main points of difference along with the size of the racquet.
The squash ball is smaller than the ball used to play racquetball. The squash ball is 4 cm in diameter and racquetball ball is 5.715 cm (2.25 inches) in diameter.
Recreational racquetball racquets are less wider and smaller than the official squash racquets. There are some stark differences in the rules which are discussed below. It is not of much consequence but the official court size of both the games are different too
A game of squash is played between either two people or four and the court is walled from all sides. The players take turns returning the ball and hitting on the front wall. You are supposed to hit the ball above the tin and below the outside to be considered valid.
The ball is considered in play as long as it is within these parameters and the ball can hit the side walls too. After the ball hits the front wall, it is allowed to bounce off the floor one time and after that, the player returns it.
It is a hollow rubber ball and bounces off the walls pretty fast. The game is fast and one rule is very crucial. You may move around the court as much as you like but you are not allowed to obstruct other players from returning the ball.
Scoring and shots
The game goes on for 21 points. This is the usual length of a set. If by chance both players get tied at 20, same rules apply as tennis. The players keep playing until one player is ahead by 2 points. If we go into the specifics of the game, there is a whole variety of shots that make up the interesting game of squash. The most common one is straight dive, also known as a good length shot, goes deep into the back of the court after hitting closer to the side wall. Next comes the Boast shot.
It means the ball hits either the back or side wall followed by the front wall and then lands on the court. Other shots are drop shot, lob shot, and kill shot. A drop shot means the ball falls to the ground slowly after hitting the wall gently. A lob shot just goes high up in the air, hits the front wall and then on the back of the court.
A kill shot is a fast blow shot that hits the front wall in the lower regions and bounces before covering the half court. These are the standardized shots and these are also the most common ones. People change the names of these shots to suit themselves and invent new ones regularly.
In this game, you can go all out in hitting the ball and ball can hit any walls as long as before hitting the floor, the ball comes in contact with the front wall. The game lasts for 11 points and you have to win 2 such sets in order to say you won a racquetball game.
The scoring is done when you are unable to hit the ball before it bounces or you are not able to return the ball. The server is similar to tennis. You drop the ball in the play area and hit it when it bounces. If you are unable to do so in 2 tries, your serve gets transferred to your opponent.
Racquetball is a very intense sport and one game lasts only a maximum of 20 minutes. A weird and unique rule of this game is that during any point of time if you think you are actually about to hurt another player, you can stop the game and do the previous rally again.
Things get so intense, both players wear eye protection wear and even wrist tethers. These are put on so that you don’t let go of your racquetball racquet. With the momentum of the racquet, you can seriously injure your opponent or even yourself. This is the danger associated with this game and hence the fact that racquetball isn’t played in schools.
Now we will list the semantics of the court for you. Generally, all racquetball specifications are bigger than squash. Following that generalization, a squash court is 21 by 32 feet in length and a racquetball court is the bigger one at 20 by 40 feet. The ceiling is higher for racquetball than squash by 5 feet. A racquetball ceiling is 20 feet tall.
As discussed before, the racquets are where the difference lies. A racquetball racquet is wider to hit the bigger ball of 6 cm diameter and the squash racquet is a little bit thinner as the ball is only 4 cm in diameter. However, there is one exception to the generalization. The squash racquet is 27 inches while the racquetball racquet is 5 inches smaller than that.
So these are the differences between squash and racquetball. Hopefully, they were clear enough. These are beginning to enter the territory of intense sports and have become very competitive in recent years.
They are being added to more and more sporting tournaments. Most working middle-aged businessmen play it as a source of vigorous exercise. So now that you understand the difference between the two games, you should definitely try out one of them.