Imagine a foosball table come to life, with human-sized players “attached” to crossbars – able to move only side to side and face only in one direction – with the sole mission of putting a ball in the opposing team’s goal – while feet kick wildly in all directions and everyone argues over perceived rule infractions.
Welcome to The Network Support Company’s annual employee appreciation picnic, where winning the team-building activity is not only encouraged, it’s unapologetically pursued with fervor usually reserved for a cage fight. But it’s all done in good fun, and everyone has a great time. In fact, regardless of which team emerges victorious – and claims the annual Winner’s Cup – we leave slapping each other on the backs, laughing, and having learned new things about each other. For instance, who knew that one of our account managers would sacrifice her shins, repeatedly, just to win possession of the ball? The picnic, and especially our foosball tournament, was just another fun way to build the great “culture of family” that we have at TNSC. Our motto is “work hard, have fun” and our managers walk the talk when it comes to making it happen.
This year, a few weeks before the picnic, we were discussing ideas for this year’s competition and someone mentioned they saw a human foosball set on YouTube. I knew that this HAD to be done, so I was giving the task of constructing it, along with a $500 budget. After carefully reviewing various guidelines and online how-to guides, I drew up plans, modified for the budget (which meant no paint!).
As a public service, here’s how to create a life-sized foosball table.
- Twelve 4×8 sheets of particleboard
- Thirty 8-foot 2x4s
- A box of 1 ½ sheet rock screws
- Eight straight metal braces
- Sixteen rafter braces
- Eight lengths of 4” drainage pipe 8’ long
- Lots of elbow grease
The structure was designed to be 32’x16’; this meant four sheets of particleboard down each side, two sheets cut to 5’ on each goal end, and a 6’ goal between them.