So you think your balls are large? MVP Sports Academy introduces NEPA to the Knockerball

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    Dave Favata and Russ Herron demonstrate the game of knockerball.

    Dave Favata, part owner of the MVP facility in Exeter and Russ Herron, owner of Knocker Balls.

    If you think you have balls, MVP Sports Academy in Exeter is about to one-up you — big time. The indoor sports training facility that provides athletes with expert coaching has a new activity — Knockerball — allowing participants to go balls to the wall while getting a solid workout.

    Knockerball is a fully-encompassed inflatable ball that protects people during contact sports such as soccer and capture the flag, said Russ Herron, who owns the balls.

    Herron said he saw videos of the inflatable balls online last year.

    “Whether it was going to be just for me and my friends, I was like, ‘I have to have them,’” he said.

    When friends Dave Favata, Mike Tierney and Sara Swepston opened MVP Sports Academy in February, he proposed to bring the sport to the new business.

    “I said I’d buy the balls,” Herron noted.

    Favata accepted Herron’s proposal, saying Knockerball complimented the mission of MVP Sports Academy.

    “Winter has taken over in our area. It seems that we have winter and summer; so for our young athletes, it puts them behind when trying to compete for scholarships or just trying to play at a higher level,” Favata said. “[MVP Sports Academy] gives them a chance to catch up with the schools from the south and the west. As soon as I saw the [Knockerball] video online, I knew it would be a big hit because every athlete is into that extreme kind of sport.”

    Knockerball isn’t only for athletes Herron said; it’s a “fun” activity the entire family can enjoy.

    “It’s not only fun, it’s a workout,” Herron added. “It strengthens your legs. You’re encompassed in this big ball, so you’re running and carrying extra weight and you’re literally beating yourself up. You don’t even realize you’re working out. You’re just having fun.”

    Those interested in the activity are encouraged to call MVP Sports Academy and schedule a reservation at 570-609-5118.

    “We do it that way [based on reservations] because we have smaller balls for kids and larger balls for adults. We don’t want to have adults running around beating up kids,” Herron said.

    Smaller Knockerballs cater to children ages six and up. Adult-sized balls are larger and weigh up to 35-pounds, Herron said.