Beach handball is a team sport where two teams pass and bounce or roll a ball, trying to throw it in the goal of the opposing team. As the ball loses most of its bounce on the sand, there is little to no dribbling, and players instead perform more passing as the rule of travelling still applies.
Matches are played in two or three sets, depending on when a team wins their second set of the game. If teams are tied at the end of a regular set then the teams will play for a golden goal, with the team scoring first a goal winning the set. If the teams are tied at the end of 2 sets then a tiebreaker set will be played. The tie break involves a goalie throwing the ball to his/her own player while that player attempts to score one-on-one with the opposing goalie.
During regular play, if the goalkeeper scores a goal this counts as two points, compared to a normal goal scored by an outfield player which counts as 1 point. Creative or spectacular goals, such as 360 degree jumps and alley-oops, are awarded two points, as well as in-flights and 6-meter throws.
Five significant steps in the history of Beach Handball
1992: The first beach handball demonstration match was played in Misano Adriatico (ITA)
1993: The first official international beach handball tournament was played in Rome (ITA)
1994: Beach handball is officially recognised by the IHF.
2004: 1st IHF Men’s and Women’s Beach Handball World Championships take place in El Gouna (EGY) with nine men’s and eight women’s teams participating. Egypt wins the men’s competition and Russia wins the women’s competition.
2018: Beach handball appears at the 2018 Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires (ARG) for the first time and is a sensation. Argentina wins the women’s title and Spain the men’s title.