FLOORBALL RULES ADAPTED FOR SCHOOLS

Rules of so called “small floorball” or “mini floorball” can be found while browsing through some of the older floorball publications. Both terms refer to the version of floorball game with modified rules. Generally there is only one referee, rink size is adjusted to the size of a basketball court (32x16m) and the game is mainly played on small goal cages without a goalkeeper. Matches are played with only 3 or 4 players on each side and the game length is around 2×15 minutes. It’s basically a floorball adjusted to suit conditions of school gym halls.

Floorball can be played completely without goalkeepers if the goal cages or goalkeeper equipment are not available. Such a form of floorball is an appropriate for PE classes as it requires less time to setup and organise teams especially by one teacher only. However if the goalkeepers are introduced, certain safety measures has to be taken to account. Goalkeeper must always wear a face mask and goalkeeper’s gloves are also strongly recommended. For games without goalkeepers the goal cages should be sized down by laying them down or preferably small goal cages should be used. Similar to other sports, marking a goal space by simply using cones is always an option.

There is no need to have a goal crease while playing without goalkeepers. However when playing floorball in a smaller gym with goalkeepers the goal crease should be present but it should be adjusted accordingly to the size of the gym. The goalkeeper crease is necessary for any form of floorball or its modification. It is not recommended to play without it. Its size doesn’t have to be exactly in accordance to the official rules. Other sports’ lines or marks can be accommodated for floorball too. For games without proper goalkeeper the last player (doesn’t always have to be the same player) defends the goal with a stick while standing. For a safety reason this player is never allowed to sit or lay down. If higher goal cages are used it is always safer to further restrict defending the goal with kneeing on one knee only to avoid head injuries.

Playing system in terms of number of participating players is decided upon their level of experience and maturity and the gym size. “Mini games” with a smaller amount of players on a small rink are more effective. Players get involved in the game more often during the same time segment. They are more in contact with a ball and they pass and shoot more often too. If you have a higher amount of players available and a large rink, it’s better to play 3 against 3 on both halves of the rink. Rink can be split by either left over boards or gym benches. This system is more effective and more enjoyable for school kids than playing 5 on 5 or even 6 against 6 on the normal size of the rink. Explanation is simple. Concentrating game to smaller area with smaller number of players provides that every player is closer to the action or ball therefore directly involved in a play. Due to size limitation and other physiological aspects playing on the big court is the same for a kid like playing floorball on a football (soccer) field for an adult.

At schools a proper floorball rink can be easily replaced by benches (especially where straight walls are missing) by laying them on a side. It is also recommended using benches in corners to make them more rounded. Where no boards or benches are available set the maximum allowed height for the ball to touch the wall or adopt „out line” rule. You can either mark your own lines or use pre-existing lines (cladding, sills, etc.) on the walls.

Coach or teacher as a referee is responsible to umpire a game and making sure the rules of the game are followed. Certain modification of rules to accommodate different conditions and secure enjoyment and game flow for all participants is necessary. I.e. shorter bench penalty in accordance to shorter match time or shortened distances from face off, hit-ins and free-hits in small gym halls (3 meters distance is shortened to 2m or even 1.5m).

 


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