Beach handball

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Men dive during a goal attempt in a beach handball game. Dia 1 - Campeonato de Espana de Balonmano Playa, Laredo 2014 (14803158031).jpg
Men dive during a goal attempt in a beach handball game.
Greek women's team members spread out to cover the Spanish player who is holding the ball. Beach handball Euro 2019 Preliminary Round Women ESP-GRE 058.jpg
Greek women's team members spread out to cover the Spanish player who is holding the ball.

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. The game is similar to standard handball, but it is played on sand instead of on a solid floor. Because the ball loses most of its bounce on sand, there is little to no dribbling, and players instead perform more passing as the rules of traveling still apply.


Matches are played as best two-out-of-three sets. If teams are tied at the end of a regular set then the teams play for a golden goal. If the teams are tied at the end of 2 sets then the teams will participate in a tie breaker. The tie break involves a goalie throwing the ball to their 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 with two points, as well as in-flights and 6 meter throws.

The first European Championships was played in the year 2000.

As of September 2014, Brazil is ranked the number 1 country in the world, and is the winner of the world championship in both men's and women's divisions at the 2014 Beach Handball World Championships. [1]


Bikinis are the traditional outfits of beach handball. The form fitting uniform allows for increased mobility and less likely to trap sand. In 2002, the men's BHA requested a more "form-fitting" uniform similar to the women's but it was denied by the association. [2]

In 2021, the Norwegian women's team were fined €1500 for being improperly dressed after the women wore bike-shorts instead of bikini bottoms at a European championship match in Bulgaria. [3] Critics derided the fine and the underlying rule. Although the Norwegian Handball Federation announced they would pay the fines, pop singer Pink received notoriety for offering to pay for them. [4]



See also

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The 2021 European Beach Handball Championship was held in Varna, Bulgaria from 13 to 18 July 2021. The tournament will is hold at Varna's South Beach area, where four courts will be constructed. All results, schedules and news regarding the EHF Beach Handball EURO can be found at


  1. "Beach Handball Carnival on the beach of Recife". 2014-07-27.
  2. Decker, Wolfgang (2017). Journal of Sport History. University of Illinois Press. pp. 64–71.
  3. "Norway's beach handball team fined for wearing shorts instead of bikini bottoms". SBS News . 2021-07-21.
  4. Manish Pandey, Daniel Rosney (2021-07-27). "Beach handball: 'It's shocking to have to pay to not play in our pants'". BBC News .