Handball is a high-energy team sport played on an indoor court. It involves two teams of seven players each, including a goalkeeper. The objective is to score points by throwing a ball into the opponent's goal. A standard match consists of two 30-minute halves, with the team scoring the most goals declared the winner.

Players use a combination of running, jumping, and dribbling to move the ball, and they must skillfully pass and shoot under pressure from the opposing team. Physical fitness, agility, and strategic teamwork are essential skills.

Popular primarily in Europe, handball has strong leagues in countries like Germany (Handball-Bundesliga), Spain (Liga ASOBAL), and France (Ligue Nationale de Handball). It's also a prominent feature in the Olympics and World Handball Championships, drawing international teams from various continents.


Handball originated in Europe in the late 19th century. Initially, it was played outdoors as field handball, and it resembled a mix of soccer and basketball. The sport evolved over time, with the indoor version becoming more popular, especially in Nordic countries. The shift to indoor play led to a faster-paced game, played on a smaller court. The first set of standardized rules was published in the early 20th century, and the sport quickly spread across Europe. Handball made its Olympic debut in 1936 for field handball and again in 1972 for the indoor version, solidifying its status as a significant international sport.


Handball is expected to evolve with increasing global interest and technological integration. The sport is gaining traction outside its traditional European strongholds, spreading to Asia, Africa, and the Americas. This expansion brings diverse playing styles and strategies, enriching the game's competitiveness. Advances in training techniques and player analytics, powered by technology, will enhance skill development and game strategies.

Efforts to make the sport more accessible, including beach handball and street handball, are attracting new audiences and participants. Handball's fast pace and dynamic nature position it well for growing popularity in school and university programs, contributing to its expanding role in international sports.

Common Questions
Common Questions
How many players are on a handball team, and what are their positions?

A handball team consists of seven players on the court at a time: six field players and one goalkeeper. The field players typically comprise two wingers (right and left), a center or playmaker, and two backs (left and right), with the pivot or line player positioned near the opponent's goal area. Each position has specific roles and responsibilities in both offense and defense.

What protective gear is required in handball?

In handball, players wear protective gear to minimize the risk of injury. This includes padded shorts and shirts for added cushioning during falls or contact. Goalkeepers often wear additional protection like padded pants, elbow pads, and sometimes knee pads due to their frequent diving saves. Mouthguards are also commonly used by all players to protect their teeth and gums during the game.

Are there different types of handball played around the world?

Different forms of handball are played around the world. Team handball, the most recognized version, is typically played indoors. Beach handball offers a variant played on sand, emphasizing agility and flair. In contrast, American handball and Gaelic handball, popular in the United States and Ireland, involve hitting a ball against a wall with hands, resembling squash without rackets. These variants each have their unique rules and playing environments.


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7.3”-7.5” | 185-191 mm (Diameter)
15-17 oz | 425-475 g
Handball - Size 3
Handball - Size 33D model of a Handball - Size III viewed in perspective3D model of a Handball - Size III viewed in perspective
65.62’ | 20 m
131.23’ | 40 m
8611 ft² | 800 m²
Handball Court
Handball Court3D model of a Handball Court viewed in perspective3D model of a Handball Court viewed in perspective
6.56’ | 2 m (Inside)
9.84’ | 3 m (Inside)
3.28’ | 1 m
210 lb | 95 kg (Typical)
Handball Goal
Handball GoalPerspective view of a 3D model of a Handball GoalPerspective view of a 3D model of a Handball Goal