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Handball. Restelo Secondary School 2009/2010. Tradition of Handball in Portugal.

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Restelo Secondary School


tradition of handball in portugal
TraditionofHandballin Portugal

At the end of the last century, in 1890, gym teacher Konrad Kech created a game with characteristics very similar to today’s handball. In Czechoslovakia they practised a very popular game very similar to handball, "azen“, name by which the sport is still known in that country. Long before handball was introduced in Portugal, there was a very similar game in Oporto, known as "malheiral”, named after its creator, the physical education teacher Porfírio Malheiro. In Portugal, handball eleven was first practised in the city of Oporto, where it was introduced in late 1929 by the German sportsman Armando Tshopp. The first official presentation of a game of handball was held on 31 January 1931, in Oporto, and later that year the Handball Association of Lisbon was formed, followed in 1932 by the Handball Association of Oporto. The seven handball was introduced in Portugal in 1949 by another German, Henrique Feist, residing in our country. The first official tournament of the new variant was organized by Feist in the village of Cascais, in the summer of 1949. The growing popularity of handball seven, both in our country and internationally, led to the gradual extinction of the handball team of eleven.

the game
The Game

Handballis a collectivesport, playedbytwoteams, eachwithsevenplayers: a goalie (goalkeeper) andsixplayers. Normallythere are sevenplayersinthebench, sothere are fourteenplayersin total.

Theaimofthe game is to gettheballinsidetheopponent’sgoal to score, andpreventtheotherteamfromscoring, oravoidyouropponentfromgettingholdoftheball.

The game iscontrolledbytherefereeteam:

  • 2 referees, a court refereeand a goallinereferee, plus;
  • 1 secretaryrecordseachteam’sreplacements, goals, andotheroccurrencesduringthe game, and notes everythingdownonthegame’sbulletin;
  • 1 timekeeperwhocontrolsthetimeofthe game, thebreaktimes (fouls, substitutions, etc.) andthetimesofplayers’ expulsion.
basic rules
Basic Rules


  • 2 halvesof 30 minutes each, with a 10 minute break (half-time).
  • Teamschangebenchesathalf-time
  • Eachteamisallowed a time-outperhalf (orshouldaninjuryoccur)


  • Playershave 3 seconds to puttheballbackintothe game.
  • Overtime – 2 periodsof 5 minutes each


  • Youcantouchtheballwitheverypartofyourbody, exceptyourfeet.
  • Youcanonlyholdtheball for 5 seconds.
  • Youcanonlytake 3 stepswiththeball.
the playing court
The Playing Court

1.6-metre line (limit line of area where no player, except the goalie, can stand in. First defensive line, aka goal area)

2. Secretary

3.Time keeper

4. Central line (midfield line where you restart the game after: a goal is scored, beginning of the the first and second halves).

5.7-metre line (line where the free throws are marked)

6. 4-metre line (line pointing how far the goal keeper can go to defend the 7 metres free throws).

7.Goal line

8.9-metre line (line where the team’s defense is organized and where the fouls suffered in the 6 and 9 metres area are marked)

9. Replacement area (the first one leaving the court is the player to be replaced).

10.Side line

11. Goal area


Game Rules


  • Use yourarmsandhands to gettheball. A playerisallowed to taketheballoutofthehandofanopponentwiththehand. It’sstrictlyforbidden to do sobygrabbingorpunchingtheball. Itdoesn’tmatteryourpositioninrelation to theopponentwhenyou’regettingtheballorblockinghim.


  • Onlythegoalkeepercanstayinsidethegoalperimeter. Ifanyopponententersthisarea, heispunishedwith a foul.

Lateral throw

  • Anytimetheball passes entirelythesideline, itwillresultin a lateral throw. Ithas to betakenwith a footonthesidelineandtheotheroneoutsideit. Youcanchoose to pass to a teammate (includingthegoalkeeper) oryoucantry to score.


  • Whentheball passes theline, beingthelastplayer to touchtheball a playerfromthedefendingteam, therefereemarks a cornerthrow. Thethrowisdone, alsowithonefootinandtheotheroutsidetheline, ontheintersectionpointbetweenthe final andthesideline. Ifthelastplayertouchingtheballisthegoalkeeper (ofthedefendingteam), a cornerthrowwillnotbemarked.
  • Therefereemarks a freethrow for an irregular switchbetweenplayers, any irregular throw, irregular dribblingoftheball, incorrectbehaviourtowardsanopponentoranti-sportsmanship. Theplayertakesthefoulontheplacewhereithasbeencommitted. Ifthefoulwascommittedbetweenthesixandthe nine metrelines, itistakenonthe nine metreline.

7-Metre Throw

  • If a seriousfouliscommitteduponanyopponent, thisthrowismarkedbythereferee. Itisalsomarkedifanyfouliscommittedduring a cleargoalsituation. Theplayerwhomakesthisthrowmust do itwithatleastonefootontheground.


  • Goalkeeper (theonlyplayerallowed to move freelyinsidethegoalperimeterandhecantouchtheballwithanypartofthebodywithinthezone)
  • 6 Fieldplayers – twowingers (locatedatbothsidesofthe court), a circlerunner (hegetsinamongtheopponentdefenders), twobacks (locatedbetweenthe centre andthewingers) and a centre (locatedinthemiddleofthedefensivearea).


  • Yellow card (warning)

Gives the player a warning (total of three to a team) used for some fouls; if other players complain or when the player doesn’t leave the ball in the exact place where the foul was committed (as ordered by the referee).

  • Blue card (2 minutes out)

The player that is given a blue card must stay out of the game for two minutes, with no right of any replacement. This punishment happens if the player commits any violent foul.

  • Red card (expulsion)

When a player is given a red card, he must leave the court and he cannot go back in – he is not allowed to play anymore. A player may receive a red card directly for particularly rough penalties.



  • The team that scores a goal may ‘follow’ the ball (from the mid-court), even if there is any member of the other team in the opposing mid-court. Only the team that suffered a goal has to be all behind the mid-court line.
  • Handball can be played by bumping against your opponent but only by using the torso (moderately intense physical contact is allowed), otherwise it is considered a foul(e.g. the use of legs and arms).

Technical and Tactical Actions

Whatfollows are some basicactionsandothersthatprovidetechnicalsuperiorityof major importanceduring a game ofhandball:


  • Usingoneorbothhands, eitherwithbothfeetontheflooror ‘airborne’
  • Shoulderorwristpass
  • Differentballtrajectories: ‘diving’, straightlineorarching


  • Movingwiththeball, continuouslydribblingtheball
  • Fingersspread-out, wristpermanentlyflexedandextended
  • Balldribbledonlyoneithersideofthebody, neveraheadofit
  • Canbeused to move forwardor to keeptheballinpossessionoftheteam



  • Pull your ‘shooting’ arm to the back of your head
  • Advance the opposite leg to your shooting arm
  • Rotate your trunk and throw the ball.


  • Can be made after a short run with dribble - only 3 steps allowed, the last one includes the jump
  • ‘Call’ with the foot opposite the ‘throwing’ arm
  • Jump and raise the knee from the same side of the throwing arm
  • Throw when you’re high enough and land.


  • Pull your arm back as far as your hip.
  • Shoot at your hip’s height.

Crossing the ball

  • While an attacking player goes behind the team player holding the ball, this same player passes him the ball in order to create a diversion in the defense.



  • Theactofgettingtheballback, byintercepting a passfromtheopposingteam.


  • To taketheballfromanopponentwhileheisdribbling, withoutcommittinganyfouls.


  • Defensiveactinwhichthe defender followstheattackingopponentinhisoffensiveattemptsinorder to keephimfromscoring.

Blocking Exchange

  • Blockingexchangeis a defensiveactinwhichthedefendingplayers swap betweentheoffensiveplayersthey are blocking.


  • Defensiveactinwhichdefendingplayersraisetheirarmsinorder to try to keeptheballfromenteringthedefensivearea.


The players’ court positions and organisation models are some of the most important things when it comes to winning a handball match.

Here are some of the most commonly used defensive and offensive models.