A ball game area like this would have been found in each of the cities of the Maya. Like today, it would have been a major local expenditure, but was probably also very popular. Clay models from western Mexico show the immediate viewing area crowded, with entire families in attendance, sitting on the ledges. There are markers on the field. It appears that balls were to be kept in motion and were hit using hips, for which reason they were protected.
Women may have played the game.
"Review: Uses of Sport," by Karl A. Taube. Science, New Series, Vol. 256, No. 5059 (May 15, 1992), pp. 1064-1065.