Editors, organizers, and players are invited to freely use this concise, indexed guide to online development resources for their own purposes, without credit to the source. The directory is intended to point to only the "best" sources, given the following biases towards:
To "correct" such biases, local editors anywhere in the world are invited and encouraged to "regionalize" the directory by adding their national association site and articles on the local or national culture of croquet in their own locales.
The following INDEX and DIRECTORY is "stacked", with the more basic information at the beginning of each section and more complex or individuated information and resources at the end.
FIRST, A FEW IMPORTANT WEBSITES TO NOTE
The World Croquet Federation website is the major source for connecting players around the world with a "member" association in their country or somewhere close by. In 2011, there are more than 20 members in several categories
The Oxford Croquet site is THE technical croquet site for the sport. It is cited only a few times in this first edition of the DIRECTORY OF ONLINE RESOURCES because its articles are intended, mostly, for the more experienced player interested in detailed information and/or prolonged study.
The official USCA Website was the first site put up by Bob Alman, in the mid 90's; it is basically an expanded MEDIA KIT and PUBLICITY SOURCE to channel interested players towards joining a USCA club - much the same as other good "Association" websites do. In this editor's opinion, it is the best designed and most comprehensive of all the "Association" websites.
Croquet World Online Magazine is the leading global independent lifestyle magazine for the sport, with professionally edited and attractively composed site-generated articles on almost every aspect of mallet or hoop games under the sun (if it isn't too technical). It was created a few months after www.CroquetAmerica.com, when the editor realized that an official site couldn't do everything required to interest people in the sport and motivate them to investigate their local or national organizations.
A CONCISE, INDEXED DIRECTORY
OF ONLINE RESOURCES FOR NEW PLAYERS,
CROQUET CLUBS, AND ORGANIZERS
PART ONE, THE GAME:
THE RULES, STROKES AND STRATEGY, AS PLAYED TODAY
GOLF CROQUET RULES SYNOPSIS
This is the form of the game most taught and exhibited, and now bolstered by significant purse events around the world. The game is growing in importance in the sport since the still-unbeated Egyptians showed the croquet world how to play it; with links to complete, official rules.
LAWS OF ASSOCIATION CROQUET, SYNOPSIS
This form of the game is also called "International Rules Croquet" in the U.S. With links to complete, official laws.
RULES FOR AMERICAN CROQUET, SYNOPSIS
The USCA American Rules games is described in brief, with links to other and complete rules.
USCA RULES FOR NINE-WICKET (GARDEN) CROQUET
A synopsis that includes mention of all the popular variations.
JOHN RICHES' "COACHING THE FUNDAMENTALS OF THE STROKE"
Riches is an Australian coach, but his advice on the stroke transcends national boundaries, in ten parts, starting with "How to address the ball."
NEW RULES FOR GOLF CROQUET, by Tony Hall, 2004
These WCF rules include refinements and new rules on penalty points. There have been a few changes since.
JAMES HAWKINS' NEW BOOK - A SAMPLE CHAPTER, 2009
On the elements of ASSOCIATION CROQUET, this book's sample chapter deals with the Outplayer's choices, and other critical issues.
HOW TO MAKE LEAVES - THE USCA PLAYBOOK, by Jeff Soo
Written near the turn of the century, it's still an excellent primer on a basic subject.
BOOK OF PUZZLERS, by Larry Stettner, on American Rules Croquet, 2007<BR>
With two detailed examples - a beginner and an intermediate - Stettner illustrates his mastery of the American game.
BASIC BREAK PLAY - the essence of croquet, by Geoffrey Naylor
A detailed, illustrated primer on the basics, with links to the Oxford Croquet site's Comparison of US and Association laws play.
INTERNATIONAL (ASSOCIATION) RULES for AMERICAN PLAYERS, by Rob Fulford
A summary and indexed guide to the DIFFERENCES between the games
COACHING NOTES ON ASSOCIATION CROQUET: from The OXFORD WEBSITE
A thorough and updated survey of what to do and how to do it, by Dr. Ian Plummer, beginning at the beginning and proceeding through the intermediate level.
A BRIEF DIRECTORY OF COACHING SITES AROUND THE WORLD
Articles and advice on coaching the game, with active links.
PART TWO: THE COURT SETTINGS & THE EQUIPMENT -
BALLS, HOOPS, AND MALLETS
MODERN CROQUET TAKES ITS SHAPE WITH THE WILLIS SETTING
The standard 6-hoop, one-peg setting dominates the organized sport today, while the 9-hoop setting dominates the more casual backyard game.
ALL ABOUT MALLETS, FROM THEORY TO MANUFACTURING
The Oxford Croquet site is a the ultimate technical website for croquet, and here's a good example of their content, constantly updated by Dr. Ian Plummer.
MALLETS AND THEIR MAKERS
What's new, what's hot, what's not, and what actually works.
THE DEATH OF THE COMPOSITION BALL, THE JAQUES ECLIPSE
From 1997, this is the story of the last composition ball, now replaced by one-piece plastic balls developed in the space age.
PART THREE - THE CULTURE OF THE SPORT
COLOURING THE SPORT: Will it make a difference?
A light-hearted but extensive romp through an old and very white conversation.
TURF WARS BETWEEN CROQUET AND LAWN BOWLING, past and present
It's sad, it's comic, and it continues, to the detriment of both sports.
HOW TO "CHEAT" AND WIN IN CROQUET
Reprinted from the 19th Century, this article is still very current in tone.
CROQUET ON CELLULOID - It's not a pretty picture
James Hawkins reviews the negative image of croquet through the lens of the movie camera; what he sees isn't all that nice.
CROQUET ON TV - Its spotty history and uncertain future
James Hawkins surveys the game and the image on the little tube.
GOLF CROQUET DEBUTS IN AMERICA at Florida's National Croquet Center
It was the best of times and the worst of times in America, and in Palm Beach: February 2002, six months after NINE-ELEVEN.
NEW USCA HANDICAPS pegged to International Rankings, by Bob Alman, 2004
Rich Curtis and others have simplified and streamlined USCA handicaps.
USCA GRAND PRIX RE-DESIGNED AND INTRODUCED ONLINE
The system incorporates a design that compromises between good performance and rewarding tournament play, by scoring only a player's top six results of each year from American Rules, Association Laws, and Golf Croquet in both singles and doubles.
INVENTING THE AMERICAN GAME
Herbert Swope, Jr., was the last surviving eyewitness to the historic croquet adventures of the “Algonquin Round Table?at his family’s Great Neck home in the 20’s, where, he says with good evidence, the American croquet game we know today was created.
THE FACE OF YOUTH in American croquet
Although they're not yet many in 2011, they are multiplying with the establishment of croquet clubs in high schools and colleges.
PART FOUR: THE LONG VIEW, ESPECIALLY FOR
ORGANIZERS - RESOURCES FOR CLUB DEVELOPMENT
HOW TO START A CROQUET CLUB
A rich online resource for (almost) everything related to beginning your club, with links to many other online sources.
THE POLITICS OF COMMUNICATION IN THE NON-PROFIT SPORT
A detailed and somewhat overlong examination of the abstractions of corporate communications as applied in the local, volunteer nonprofit croquet club, by Bob Alman.
IN PURSUIT OF MORE PERFECT JUSTICE IN TOURNAMENT DESIGN
Bob Alman, Louis Nel, and a host of other commentators engage a most interesting topic.
HOW WILL THE MEGA-CENTRES SURVIVE AND PROSPER? - by Bob Alman, 2007
This detailed analysis compares the American and the Australian models for 12-court "mega-centres."
THE YEAR 1984 AND THE GILLESPIE REPORT revisited in the year 2001
In 1984, American croquet was projected to reach 100,000 by now. What happened? And what can the local manager take away from such a depressing idea?
THE SPORT'S MAJOR ISSUES - Opinion Leaders throughout the World check in
The article is a conversation among Bob Alman, Gail Curry, and James Hawkins, with extended quotes from other bigwigs around the world, from Australia, New Zealand, and England. An extended sidebar of LINKS expands the conversation to more than 20 additional sources.
V IS FOR VICIOUS, V IS FOR VICTORY - by James Hawkins
It could very well be the first time that a croquet game brought down an already unpopular government via the vicious swipes in the press aimed at Blair's second-in-command, Prescott.
CROQUET'S 'BAD BOY' HAS LEFT THE COURT
Mik Mehas, with an international reputation, helped to give croquet in America a sportier image, to go with his baseball-inspired costume.
CAN DIRECT MAIL ADVERTISING SUCCEED AS A LOCAL CLUB STRATEGY?
Yes and no: Yes, if you think this balance sheet from an Australian croquet club is worth it; No, if you decide it wasn't worth the trouble.
AMERICA'S LEADING MODEL FOR THE THREE-LAWN PUBLIC CROQUET CLUB
Florida's Sarasota County Croquet Club does it all: novice memberships, teaching, a stand-alone youth group, and careful scheduling of the lawns to ensure universal access.
DEVELOPMENT MODELS FOR FOUR TYPES OF CROQUET CLUBS
The private court on public land; the Golf Club croquet court; the one-lawn club on museum grounds; and the multi-lawn "private" club in suburbia.
CROQUET HEAVEN IN A DESERT OASIS PARADISE
The club at Rancho Mirage in the Coachella Valley has attained an eleven-court maximum capacity by co-developing expansion with its tennis-court neighbors. As with most species that share similar turf - golfers, lawn bowlers, croqueters and tennis players - they don't get along well - but that's a small price to pay for the benefit each group receives from the alliance.
HOW TO STAGE A SUCCESSFUL GOLF CROQUET EXHIBITION
(1) Enlist "star" players;
(2) Publicize widely
(3) Have play-by-play commentary
(4) Use a scoreboard
(5) Limit the game to 45 minutes max.
The degree of your "success" depends on your production and promotion abilities and your good luck.
HOW TO BUILD A FREE AND EASY CLUB WEBSITE
ON WEEBLY.COM WITH NO TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE http://www.croquetamerica.com/usca/startaclub/HowToBuildAnEasyCroquetClubWebsite.pdf
It's all there, and you don't even have to buy a domain name!
HOW TO FIND CROQUET CLUBS IN OTHER COUNTRIES
Click on "members" in the upper left hand corner (below "home page") and then click on the names of the contacts in the line for each of the members (meaning countries), which takes you to the email address of the secretary of the national association.
WEBSITE EDITORS AND OTHERS ARE INVITED AND ENCOURAGED TO USE THIS FRAMEWORK TO COMPLETE AND PUBLISH THEIR OWN DIRECTORIES FOR THE SAME PURPOSE. NO CREDIT OR ACKNOWLEDGMENT IS REQUESTED FOR SUCH EXPANDED VERSIONS.
- Bob Alman, Editor
CROQUET WORLD ONLINE MAGAZINE