Ancient games and exciting tournaments: the thrilling challenges in the sphaeristeria.
Magical squares, which are lively and vibrant. Spaces where popular passion is expressed in all its power, where history is made, a collective and exciting history. The true essence of Piedmont can be found in the “pallapugno” (fistball) and “tamburello” (wall tambourine) arenas. Ancient sports that are an integral part of the culture of Langhe Monferrato Roero. To an attentive visitor, wandering through picture-postcard villages, it will be quite easy to see that many of the squares are lined with ancient walls, ramparts and remains of fortifications.… well, these historic architectural elements are actually part of places that are lived, vibrant and motivated by challenges that are perpetuated unchanged over time. This is because in the villages where there was not a real sphaeristerium, the squares or churchyards were turned into game courts, perhaps not quite up to standard, perhaps "readapted" using some trick, such as the so called pantalera (in fistball it is the small roof on which to bounce the ball if the court is not long enough), but always ready for the game on festive days. The keen visitor will not miss the opportunity to watch a game of "balon", fist ball, in the Langhe, or "tambass", i. e. tambourine in its wall or open versions, in Monferrato.
Individual stories of champions and collective stories of people who proudly identify with these sports.
Spheristeria where local dialect is the official language, where people cheer and get angry with the phrases of their ancestors, where the show is on the pitch, but the stands are picturesque and appealing. Although the athletes will never be as famous as those in football or other more prestigious sports, here they are heroes and friends who are worth joining the fray: support is an integral part of these matches and makes all the difference. There is power, endurance, impressive athletic gestures, but above all a strong bond with their land and the village for which they compete. The balls cut through the air at great speed, the shots are precise and the movements are sudden and powerful: it takes a great athletic physique to play these competitions, but above all it takes a community and a strong connection with its local culture.