All About Goalball
The History And Rules Of Goal Ball
Austrian Hanz Lorenzen is credited with inventing the game in 1946. The idea came from the need to for a sports based rehabilitation program for blind World War Two veterans. It was 1st introduced to the world during the Paralympics held in Toronto in 1978. Since then the sport of goal ball has spread throughout the world.
Each goalball team consists of 3 members with each end protecting the goal line. There is one center and 2 wings on each team. The game is of fourteen minutes duration with two halves of seven minutes. A rubber ball with bells inside for auditory tracking is used. Each player has to wear a blindfold regardless of the degree of visual impairment. Each player has the option to wear elbow pads, kneepads, hip pads and face protection.
Most people who are visually impaired or blind usually do not have many opportunities to be involved in team sports and physical activity. One of the great benefits of goal ball is that it promotes teamwork and cooperation among participants.
In addition, because goal ball can be played with individuals who are sighted and visually impaired together, it acts as a medium for breaking down barriers. A natural result of this is that it helps promote awareness within the community of what individuals who are visually impaired can do.
Competitors who want to compete in a sanctioned international tournament, national tournament, or dual match must be legally blind. However, in community play there are no classifications and everyone can enjoy the game.
Rules Of Goal Ball
The game begins by tossing a coin to determine possession and preferred sides. The team that starts play will roll the ball offensively to the opposition team. Coaches are not allowed to communicate with players at any time during play (exceptions being timeouts and half time) The ball must be rolled to the opposing end and must 1st land in the landing zone.
The offensive team has eight seconds to either throw the ball, pass to a teammate or call a time out If the ball is not thrown in eight seconds a penalty will follow and that team will lose possession. Whistles are used to communicate time left on the clock to the players.