Goalball South Australia
The game is played by two teams of three players with a maximum of three substitutes on each team. The game is conducted on the floor of a gymnasium within a rectangular court which is divided into two halves by a centre line. Goals are erected at either end. The game is to be played with a bell ball. The object of the game is for each team to roll the ball across the opponent’s goal line while the other team attempts to prevent this from happening.
The rules for international goalball competition are those adopted by the International Blind Sports Association (IBSA). Further information & the current rules area available at: http://www.ibsasport.org/sports/goalball/
Up to date information on how to get involved in goalball within South Australia is available at: http://www.goalballsouthaustralia.org/
Goalball’s distinctive competition atmosphere sets it apart from any other sporting experience. The games are required to be kept silent as 3 players on each team, who are completely blindfolded by “blackout” eyeshades, use their entire body to block a 1.25kg audible ball from making it into the opponent’s goal. Each goal is 1.3 metres in height and spans the entirety of the backcourt – think of it as the opposite of Dodgeball.
This intense game allows players of all degrees of vision to participate at an equal level together. Players are then able to orientate themselves to the 18 x 9-metre court through tactile line-markings. Players must react instantly to the sound of the bells inside the ball that help the players distinguish where the opposition has thrown it from. The duration of a Goalball game lasts for two 12 minute halves with a 3 minute half time break, with the average game lasting around 50 minutes.
Rules & Equipment
The court used for goalball is an 18m x 9m rectangle. Starting from the final lines, where the goalposts are placed, a 9m x 3m team area and a 9m x 3m landing area for each team are marked. The remaining 9m x 6m area, between the two landing areas, is called the neutral area, which is divided into two parts by the centre line. With the exception of the final lines, all court markings are tactile to help players orientate themselves on the court.
Regulation goals measure 9m (equal to the length of the court) x 1.3m.
The ball used for International goalball competition is made of rubber, weighs 1.25kg and has a circumference of approximately 76cm. It has eight holes and there are noise bells inside.
All competitors must wear blackout masks at all times on court. At all major competitions, players have their eyes covered by gauze patches. Penalties are given if a player touches the blackout mask during play. This ensures that the level of vision of all players is equal.
Who is eligible to compete in goalball?
Only athletes with a vision impairment affecting both eyes are eligible to compete in goalball at an International Level.
At a local level and at state championships level, competition is open to all, including those that are not classifiable (Fully sighted).