What is Floorball?
A new sport has arrived The Gong and it’s called “Floorball”. But what on earth is Floorball?
Floorball is an innovative new sport that is quickly spreading across the world. Floorball is a fast paced indoor sport that blends the greatest elements of ice hockey with some characteristics also found in soccer and basketball.
It started in Sweden in the 1970s as an alternative to ice hockey and since then has enjoyed unparalleled growth in Scandinavia and rest of the Europe, where it is known by other names such as Innebandy (in Swedish), Salibandy (in Finnish) and Unihockey (in German). Today, Floorball has spread to more than 50 official countries.
Floorball is an indoor sport with five field players and one goalie on each team. Each field player usually has a light carbon graphite stick, which is about 1 metre long. The ball is 7.5 centimetres in diameter, made from plastic, and weighs only 23 grams. Matches are divided into three twenty minute periods.
No violent physical contact is allowed and players may not raise their sticks above their waists. Floorball has been called a thinking man’s game, with skill and technique more important than brute strength or intimidation.
The combination of these elements make floorball not only incredibly fast, but also incredibly safe. The video below provides a good visual description of the sport.
Floorball is an exceptionally easy game to play even for the first time, whether you are playing socially or competitively. It’s said that floorball takes minutes to learn but years to master.
Not only is Floorball safe, fast and exciting, but its great exercise too. Floorball is an incredible overall workout yet it is still suitable for people of all ages and abilities. It is also an inexpensive sport compared to others; essentially all that you need to start playing are some sports clothes and a Floorball stick.
Everyone is invited to come along and try floorball for themselves. All equipment is provided all you need to bring is sporting clothes and a few of your friends if you want. Check out our training link for more information about where you can play Floorball in the Wollongong region.
Basic ideas when picking up the stick
When starting floorball the main things to look at are:
You have a top hand and a bottom hand on the grip, if left is your top hand then youre a rightie and if its right on top, then you’re a leftie.
Most players are lefties in Europe, however in Australia most of them are right handers. An even balance of lefties and righties in a team is advantageous.
Your top hand is dedicated to stay on the stick otherwise you get really tangled up, tackled easily and learn the wrong technique for most skills.
When tackling other players, go for the ball. A swinging style tackle will be considered slashing.
When shooting and passing, most of your power comes from behind your back foot as you stand side on to your target. Starting your pass or shooting near your front foot will cause the ball to rise.
When shooting or passing remember the ball is just 23 grams, a mobile phone is 80 grams, it doesn’t take much to move this thing.
If the ball is even a couple of centimetres off the ground, get used to using your foot, definitely do not bang the ball down into the court as it will bounce even higher.
Most important of all, don’t forget to have fun!
A Few Simple Rules
International rules of floorball can be found from homepage of International Floorball Federation www.floorball.org
Here are few simple basic rules to make the game comfortable and safe.
Floorball is a non-contact sport.
Keep the blade of your stick always below your waist.
Hitting, lifting and holding your opponents stick
Doing this will give the opposing team a free hit
When reaching for the ball, keep at least one foot on a ground.
This is not soccer, do not use your head (or hands) to reach the ball.
Try to use your skills, not force. To get the ball be careful not to injure anyone by slashing with your stick
Let’s behave and remember to have fun!
Just play on if referee shows this. Example: If your goal wasn’t really a goal and no faults were conducted even if someone is loudly protesting.
When both sides are innocent. Example: When the game starts again after the rink boards has fallen, game had to be stopped while fixing them.
If you breake the rules your opponents get a free hit from the place the referee is pointing to.
You have the ball anyway and you’re in good position, so there’s no reason to stop the game and give you a free hit, though someone did break the rules.
Count the referees fingers to find out how many minutes you have to calm down on a bench while your team mates has to play with one man less on a field.
Floorball’s international umbrella organisation is the International Floorball Federation (IFF), founded on April 12, 1986. The founding members countries were Sweden, Finland and Switzerland.
There are over 250 000 floorball players who take part in international competitions and more than one million players overall. At present, there are 52 member nations in the IFF.
The decision-making body of the IFF is the nine-member Executive Board. Responsibilities are divided amongst several committees. One ongoing important IFF project includes the acquisition of coaching knowledge and material and its transference to new member countries. Finland has lent particularly strong support to the floorball federations in the Baltic countries and Australia.
The men’s first international game was played in Sollentuna, Sweden on August 29, 1985. The women’s first international game, between Sweden and Norway, took place in Örebro, Sweden on May 8, 1993. The first official international games for junior men under nineteen were played in Helsinki, Finland on November 8-10, 1996 between Finland, Sweden and Switzerland.
The men’s European Championships commenced in Helsinki in the spring of 1994. In the following year, the European Championships were organised in Switzerland at which time women also participated. The first World Championships were played in Sweden in the spring of 1996. The final between Sweden and Finland attracted over 15 000 spectators to the Globe Arena in Stockholm.
The women’s first World Championships were played in the Åland Islands on May 3-10, 1997. In 1999 the Finnish women gained World Champion title in Borlänge, Sweden. Hereafter, the World Championships are organised in alternate years for men and women.
Floorball was an exhibition sport at the World Games in Lahti on August 14-17, 1997. The International Floorball Federation is an ordinary member of the General Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) and, in recent years, has been granted provisional recognition from the International Olympic Committee (IOC). This paves the way for Floorball to eventually become an Olympic sport.
Some information taken from Glebe FBC’s website.