What is Handball?
Handball which is also known as ‘team handball’ or Olympic handball or European team handball or European handball or Borden ball, is a team sport in which two teams consisting of seven players each (six players and a goalkeeper) participate and compete against each other. The six players pass the ball to each other and try to throw it into the goal post of the opposite team. The play has two halves of 30 minutes each. The team which scores more goals wins. Handball usually is played indoors, but there are other variants also which allows the games to be played outdoors as well. These two variants of Handball are field handball and Czech Handball (which is also called sandball). Because the game is so rapid and includes body contacts it attracts a big number of people. Because of the short court, the frequency and amount of goal scoring are big which keeps the crowd interested. On average, the goal-scoring in a Handball match is about 20 goals each but there were 30 goals each game as well in the past.
Brief History of Handball
The game of Handball was founded at the end of the 19th century in the northern parts of Europe, specifically in Germany and in Scandinavia. But the modern game of Handball was carved in 1917 in Germany and since then it has gone through several amendments as well. The first ever International Handball game for men was played in 1925 and for women’s was played in 1930. The first ever Handball game in an Olympics happened in the 1936 Berlin games and then it made a comeback into the games in the 1972 Munich games, again in Germany. The first one was played outdoors and the second one was played indoors. The women’s version of the game was added in the 1976 Montreal games.
The International Handball Federation, which was established in 1947 oversees the game and it has 174 members associated with it. Since 1938 each of the continental European team has won at least a single medal in the Olympics, hence it is very popular in those parts of the world.
Coins on Handball
The game of Handball is so popular in Europe that in 2003 European Union minted a 10 Euro Handball commemorative coin to celebrate the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Some Interesting Facts about Handball
After learning about what exactly the game of Handball is and about two different variants of it, now it’s time to know some of the funny or important facts about Handball. So here we are with some of the most interesting facts about the game called Handball.
- If you look at the fastest game of handball carefully, you will realize that it is a combination of three games, basketball, football and water polo.
- There are two main referees in the game of handball, one is a court referee and the other is a goal-line referee.
- The most interesting thing about handball is that the players are not restricted with the number of faults they produce.
- With more nations joining in the beach handball is getting more popular and probably may take over the indoor handball in coming years.
- Not only the size, but the softness of the ball also differs in man, women and children’s fun handball games.
- The origin of the game was believed to be in Greece in the ancient times.
- Though it is not popular outside, it is believed that it is the second largest sport in Europe after football.
- European handball for kids: In the European style the player is allowed to take three steps before passing on the ball to the other player, but in the American version only one step is allowed for the players.
- The goalkeeper can move both inside and the outside of the goal line , but the rest of the players are allowed only outside of the goal line and not the inside.
- The handball player can hold the ball only for three seconds.
- The first-ever international handball game for men was played between Germany and Belgium in 1925 and for women, it was played between team handball Germany and Austria in 1930.
- Handball is believed to be the second-fastest game on the earth or world after ice hockey.
- Just like in football the ball must not touch player’s hands apart from the goalkeeper in the handball it is exactly the reverse, the ball must not touch the player’s legs with the goalkeeper is allowed.
- Johan Pettersson a Swedish handball player almost died when he bumped into the goalkeeper in a game in 2002 in which he lost a couple of his teeth and had almost swallowed his tongue.
List of Handball World Champions:
Handball World Champions [Men]:
- The German champions in the 2018/19 season were SG Flensburg-Handewitt, the current DHB Cup winners are THW Kiel.
- In Austria, the UHK Krems won the championship and the cup in the 2018/19 season.
- Kadetten Schaffhausen became Swiss champions in 2018/19 , Wacker Thun won the cup competition .
- Champions League winner 2017/2018 was Montpellier HB . The Füchse Berlin won the EHF Europe Cup and AHC Potaissa Turda won the EHF Challenge Cup .
- At the men’s handball world championship 2019 in Denmark and Germany, Denmark won the title by beating Norway 31:22. France finished third, defeating Germany at 26:25 in the game for the third position.
- At the European Handball Championship 2020 in Austria, Sweden, and Norway, Spain defended its title in the final against Croatia (22:20). Third place went to Norway against Slovenia (28:20).
- Denmark won Olympic gold in Rio 2016 with a 28:26 victory over France.
Handball World Champions [Women]:
- The German championship won in the season 2018/19 the SG BBM Bietigheim , Cup Winners’ Cup was the Thüringer HC .
- In Austria, WAT Atzgersdorf won the championship for the first time in 2018/19. The cup winner of the 2018/2019 season was Hypo Niederösterreich.
- The Swiss champions of the 2018/19 season were LC Brühl handball and the Spono Eagles were cup winners.
- The 2018 Champions League winner is Győri ETO KC. The EHF Cup winner is SCM Craiova, and the Challenge Cup was won by MKS Lublin from Poland.
- The European champion in France in 2018 was France (24:21 against Russia ), the Netherlands came third.
- At the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Russia beat France 22:19, while Norway secured the bronze medal.
- In the final of the 2017 World Cup in Germany, France won 23:21 (against Norway), with the Netherlands taking third place.