Handball Rules

Pentasport Handball Rules

***Rules applicable for all sports: To be eligible for playoffs, participants should play in at least 3 regular season games for their team. The purpose of the league reps are not to referee the games. Team captains and their teams are expected to referee their own games responsibly. League Reps will step-in to make important calls and clarify rules at their own discretion. If issues arise, team captains are asked to come together and speak to the League Rep. No other player except for a team captain should approach the League Rep with issues***

  1. Please be at the courts 10 minutes before your game.
  2. A match will consist of two 25 minute halves with a 5 minute break between halves
  3. Teams are comprised of 6 players (1 goalie and 5 players) with minimum 2 girls on the floor at all times. (April 8, 2016 update: a girl goalie does count against this ratio)
  4. Handball must be held in the hand. Kicking to score is not allowed.
  5. Ball may only be held for a maximum of 5 seconds. Any longer and it will be given to the other team.
  6. A maximum of 3 steps is allowed; Additional steps result in immediate stoppage of play and the relinquishment of the ball to the opposing team. (Sept 15, 2016 update: with the exception of the goalie inside the crease. The goalie can take unlimited steps within the crease but is constrained by the same 5 second to release the ball rule)
  7. A dropped ball results in a change of possession where the infraction occured. Defensive team player must be atleast 5 feet away from player restarting play where the infraction occured
  8. No contact between players is allowed (April 8, 2016 update: do your best to avoid contact. No swiping, hitting, or grabbing at the opposing player or the ball he/she is holding. When defending, you are only allowed to guard with hands up or out)
  9. No diving for the ball along the floor
  10.  (Updated Oct 16, 2017): A player on defense may not be in the crease and in a position to interfere with the opponent taking a shot. Doing so will result in a penalty shot for the offensive team.  A penalty shot is taken from the top of the crease without any run-up – must be taken by the offensive player involved in the play.
  11. One goalkeeper is allowed per team. This person is allowed to block shots while in the crease. They may leave the crease as they please, but only ONE person is allowed in the crease at all times.
    • Can only switch goalkeeper with stoppage in play
  12. You may jump into the crease only if you can avoid contact with defenders or the goalkeeper opposing you. If you have the ball, you must let go of the ball before ANY part of your body touches the ground. If you do not have the ball, you must leave the crease immediately or be in risk of being penalized, giving up the ball to the defending team. (April 8, 2016 update: if your foot touches the line for the crease – that is considered a violation and ball goes to the defensive team)
  13. Running through the crease is permitted whether offensively or defensively to get to the other side; however, you cannot interfere with an attempted shot while in the crease as an offensive or defensive player. If deemed to have done so, ball goes to opposing team. If a defensive player enters their own crease to take possession of the ball after a rebound, offensive team gets possession at half court. If the offensive player enters the defending crease to take possession of a loose ball, the ball goes to the defending goalie. (September 11, 2018 update)
  14. Upon giving up a goal, the goalie can put the ball into play immediately. However, the team must pass once before the half line. Not doing so results in loss of possession. 
  15. You may not pass to yourself off the wall, or through the air.
  16. Goalies may not wear protective gear that will amplify their goalkeeping ability, such as hockey pads or blocker gloves. Gear such as knee-pads and goggles are allowed.
  17. Charging a stationary person while on offence results in the defending team obtaining the ball.
  18. Substitutions can be made on the fly except for the goalie where there must be a stoppage in play.
  19. Balls that are out of play (end lines) will result in goalie’s possession if it goes off the offensive team and a corner throw in if it goes off the defensive team. Defensive team player must be atleast 5 feet away from the inbounding player. The exception is if it goes off the goalie while making a save; in this case, the possession always goes to the goalie. (April 8, 2016 update: Balls that are out of play (sidelines) will result in the other team getting possession where the ball went out)
  20. (April 19, 2016 update): new crease size in effect as below picture:

Handball new crease