In Air Hockey, Are You Allowed To Stop The Puck?


In Air Hockey, Are You Allowed To Stop The Puck?

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Have you ever been playing air hockey and your opponent stopped the puck? Maybe they said that it was legal, and you are about to find out! Well we have all of the answers you may have about air hockey right here. 

So in air hockey, are you allowed to stop the puck?

Although many people try, it is illegal to pick up your pusher and place it on top of the puck. The only time you are allowed to lift your pusher off the table is if you are hitting the puck from out of the air. If you do lift it to stop the puck there is a penalty. 

If you want to know more about air hockey, you will want to keep reading this article. You can also watch this video to see the best way to play from a two time world champion! 

Other rules about Air Hockey

If the puck is touching the center line, any player can hit it.This does not matter what side of the line the puck is on. Interaction with the puck is the main mechanic, and therefore there are some very specific rules about how you can and can’t hit it. The most broken rule is the one about stopping the puck. 

When the puck is struck, and the defense loses their mallet, they can’t stop the puck with their hands or body. When this shot situation occurs, prior to or simultaneously losing a mallet, the score counts.

When a player takes a shot, and the puck enters their own goal without interference or a defensive shot by the opponent, the point counts. However, when this occurs, the player is permitted to use their hands to stop the puck.

How to choose pucks?

Air hockey is a long-standing arcade favorite, and with a huge range of home tables now available, even more people are honing their skills and learning more about what is arguably one of the most exciting and exhilarating table games out there.

For those who are serious about getting into the game, it’s important to know your tools. The pucks and pushers are the two most important pieces of equipment you need when playing. Air hockey is unique in that the puck essentially becomes an extension of your hand, leaving little room for error if your aim or reflexes aren’t quite right. This is why having good equipment  is essential.

What is official puck size?

We started out by taking a look at the size of commercial pucks, suitable for the big 7 foot tables you find in the arcades. These pucks are usually 80mm – but for smaller tables, you might want something a little smaller to get the same range of movement. Here are the  measurements of the pucks, so you can determine which size you need:

7ft table = puck size 80mm, 75mm or 63mm

6ft table = puck size 63mm

5ft table = puck size 55mm (junior table)

Pushers are usually 95mm in diameter, but we recommend you go for a 75mm model if you have a 5ft table, as this will maintain the challenge and require the same level of dexterity across the table. Now that you know what size you need, here is the best place to get one! 

Standard Puck Weight

Pucks can weigh up to forty-two grams. Although this may not sound like much, often it’s the heavier models that are easier to play with. A small table will come with a puck that’s much lighter and smaller weighing half of what a standard sized puck will be. The full-sized tables will come with heavier, bigger pucks as stated above. 

What are pucks and pushers made from?

Most pucks and pushers are made from high-grade moulded plastic, which is light enough to pick up speed and be carried by the flow of the table. If you’re playing at home, you might find it useful to look out for “low noise” pucks. These are made from a slightly softer plastic, making them a little springier to play with, but without the clattering noise we associate with the arcade tables!

Appearance

Air hockey pucks and pushers come in all sorts of different colours and combinations. This all depends on which brand you buy from and whether you buy individual packs or commercial sets.

There are actually two types of pusher, or “mallet”. The most common are the sombrero-like ones you’ll see in our store, with a comfortable handle to grip as you play. The less common are the “flat-tops”. These have a smaller handle, and no raised lip around the diameter, making them a little lighter.

If you really want to play like the pros, remember that the only USAA-approved colours for pucks are red, yellow and green. If you want to get fancy though, you can always go with games like Pac-Man Smash have taken puck colours to a whole new level!

Does Size Really Matter?

Most manufacturers that produce low-priced tables will not use the best air hockey pucks and paddles. They will do this to try and cut costs, as well as allow you to purchase additional ones from them so they make more money. 

If they did use the heavier official pucks and paddles, they would need to equip the table with a larger, more expensive blower system. In order to keep the price of the table down, they use smaller than average blower systems that are not designed to handle full-sized pucks. 

These tables typically sell well since consumers don’t know any better and think they’re getting a great deal simply because the table is cheap. If consumers knew that these low-priced tables were designed with a weak blower system, less than adequate materials, and cheap if any pucks and pushers, then they might think twice before they buy them. This is why we always recommend buying a table similar to this one if you can afford it.  Tables like this one are the best of the best and being that they are full size and made with top materials, you can play on this table all the way up to the professional levels. If you have room for a seven foot table, you will definitely want to get one as once you play on one of these, it is hard to ever go back to the smaller tinier ones. 

Conclusion

No matter what table you can afford or have room for in your house, if you get an air hockey table, you are bound to have fun as well as get better so the next time you are at the arcade with your friends you can show off your new skills. 

If you do decide to get the full size table though you are bound to learn exactly where to hit the puck to always score and you will be alot more accurate than if you only have a small table in your home to practice on.

Not only are these tables good to practice on, but they are a great way to occupy time in your home and play games with your friends and family when they are over. It does not need all the extra room around it like a pool table, and everyone loves air hockey as it can be played easily no matter your age! 

Matt Robbs

There is nothing quite so enjoyable as bringing back memories from your childhood. We used to spend hours playing pinball in my friends basement and that really got me involved in everything retro!

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