FLOORBALL : New game on the rise targets Primary and Secondary schools

DAVID GOMBE

In 2015, Floorball was introduced in Uganda by Robert Zimula now based in Sweden. The game is played both indoor and outdoor. The trio of Ivan Mitti, Godfrey Yiga and Michael Ssemanda fresh from a working trip in Sweden has also been instrumental in spreading the game to various parts of the country.

The three gentleman together with the Uganda Floorball Association came up with an idea of teaching the game starting with the grassroots. This has seen both primary and secondary schools benefit from this idea, the likes of Kisubi Primary, Entebbe Junior school, Kisubi Mapeera Secondary school and Progressive SS Kitintale. Turkish Academy and Galaxy National School among others have also been contacted.

The game which is a simplified version of hockey has also attracted over eight clubs in the country both men and women they include TLC, Sheraton, Baghdad, Kawempe, Mandela College, Legacy, Kings, Kisubi, Makerere University, Uganda Christian University and Entebbe. Some of the training grounds in Uganda include, Mandela National Stadium park yard and TLC Training Center in Kamwokya.

Floorball Rules and Regulations:

1. No Faceoff: Instead you have a Free Hit or a Hitting. The game starts with a Start Off.

2. Throwout: The goalie has no stick, and starts the play with a throwout. The ball must bounce before the centre line.

3. No Pass to Goalie: When you’re fore checking it’s not fair if the defenseman can give the ball to the goalie

4. No Field player in Goalkeeper Area: This area belongs to the goalie alone. Players on both teams, stay out

5. No Stick Check: The stick can only be used to play the ball. Hacking and whacking on the opponents stick might only break it and cause injuries.

6. No Contact with Stick: You wear no padding, so even an accidental hit might hurt. So control your stick at all times.

7. No Stick Lift: Since you is not aloud to wear gloves, you don’t want anyone to lift your stick and by mistake break your finger.

8. No High Stick: Regardless if you’re using your stick, knee or foot, the ball can only be played under knee level.
9. No Pushing: Do you want to push and shove?

10. No Hands: You can’t use your hands to play the ball. If it’s lower than your knee, use your stick. Otherwise, let it go

11. Only Feet may Touch the Floor: This makes the game faster and more open. No jumping

12. No Stick between Feet: This gives you offensive freedom to roll off the checker at all times.

13. No Slap Shot: Work on your wrist shot, and you’ll be able to shoot the ball quicker and almost as hard. Slap shots might only damage your stick.

14. No Kick Pass: You can only kick the ball one time and only to your own stick.

15. It is not allowed to:
• Hit, block, lift or kick an opponent’s stick.
• Push, tackle or obstruct the opponent
• Pass the ball to a team mate with feet
• Play the ball above the knee level with the stick
• Raise the blade above the waist level when hitting the ball
• Jump up and stop the ball.
• Play the ball between the opponent’s legs.
• The goalkeeper to have the ball in hands for more than 3 seconds.

16. When offences are made, free hits are given for the opponents and if offences are bad enough penalties are given. Players can be sent off for two, five, or ten minutes or for the rest of the game, depending on the severity of the offence. A penalized player is not allowed to leave die penalty bench area, until their penalty time has finished.

17. The most frequent offences are slashing (incorrect hit) and illegal pushing although the rules -playing shoulder to shoulder with the opponent. The intensity of the game requires two referee in order to swift and correctly interpret situation and make sure that the rules are followed.

Below are the simplified Floorball Rules

•Games can be played with three to five players and a goalie on the court for each team. The goalie may be substituted for an additional player if desired. For an official game, five players and a goalie for each team is required.

•No catching ball or hands on ball, except for goalie, infraction results in a 2 min penalty.

•No foot passes to another player, infraction results in a possession change, but players may kick the ball once onto their own stick.

•No jumping (one foot must be on the ground when receiving the ball), infraction results in a free hit.

•Players may not go down on two knees to make plays or block shots. Only the goalie may play from their knees, infraction results in a 2 min penalty.

•Ball must be received on a stick below knee level, infraction results in a possession change. If contact is made with the ball above the knee, infraction results in a 2 min penalty.

•Sticks must stay below waist level when shooting with a similar follow through allowed. Stick above waist on a shot will result in a 2 min penalty.

•No stick checking, lifting, or slashing. A minor infraction results in a possession change, an infraction in a scoring position or repeated infraction results in a 2 min penalty.

•No holding of stick, players, or shirt or general interference, infraction will result in a 2 min penalty.

•No playing your stick between another player’s legs. Results in a possession change.

•No body contact with the exception of incidental shoulder contact, infractions will result in a 2 min penalty.

•No playing the ball with the head – infraction results in a 2 min penalty.

•Face-offs: Face offs will be used to start the game at the beginning of each period and to re-start after each goal or if the ball is damaged. For a face-off, stick blade must be on the ground and perpendicular to centerline, feet parallel to centerline ball and the middle of the two players’ sticks. Players cannot reverse their grip or hold the stick below the face-off line. Play starts with a whistle blow.

•Possession changes: Occurs in the situations cited above. Ball is played as a direct free shot similar to a soccer free kick, where the offending players must be 3 meters away and the ball must be shot or played to another player upon the officials whistle blow with a solid hit – not a sweeping motion.

•Substitutions may occur at anytime.

•Repeated infractions result in a 2 min penalty.