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April 2017
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TCHOUKBALL

TCHOUKBALL

Tchoukball Tchoukball is a team sport that was invented between the 1960s and 1970s by Dr Hermann Brandt, a Swiss sports doctor. Its name comes from the onomatopoeic noise the ball (which is similar to a volley ball) makes when it bounces off the net.
From studies carried out by Dr Brandt, it was found that the majority of sports injuries were, and still are, caused by physical contact and crashing into opponents, and it is the joints and attached muscle and tendon structures that are affected the most.

Even though this sport has some technical and tactical similarities to disciplines like volleyball, hand ball and Basque pelota, Tchoukball distorts all traditional models of sports games with its rules making it an easy and quick game to play which is highly educational. Tchoukball takes the bounce from Basque pelota, whilst it takes the idea of having players free of opponents and external pressure from volleyball and tennis, and this means that players can also move better and perform technical movements as well as possible.

How you play
Tchoukball requires two teams of 7 or 9 players, a volleyball ball and two special panels placed at either end of the court. As far as the surface of the court is concerned, there are various possibilities: gyms, fields and even beaches are suitable for this sport. Tchoukball has many special features which make it a fast, technical and fun game. Each team can make three passes before they have to shoot, which involves throwing the ball against the elastic panel which, instead of taking it ‘in’ like normal goals, rebounds it off at a high speed. At this point, if the balls falls to the floor, the attacking team wins a point, whereas if a defender catches it straightaway play starts again and the defending team becomes the attacking side and has to make three passes before going for goal. In Tchoukball, both teams can shoot at both panels, and it is because of this unique characteristic that this sport is defined as bi-polar. Each player must also know how to play a defensive and attacking role in the team.
When playing 9 vs 9, the court used is a volleyball court (40m x 20m); if playing 7 vs 7, the court used is a basketball court (28m x 15m).
The court must have 2 ‘off-limits’ semi-circles with a radius of 3m in front of the panels into which nobody can enter during the game.

Tchoukball is appreciated by almost everyone who has the chance to try it since it is particularly dynamic, fun, great to watch, suitable for everyone and, above all, educational. Thanks to the fact that there are no obstructions or aggression and rules that mean you must respect other players, because it is a non-contact sport, this sport is characterised by its ethical values and fair play, and this is precisely why it has become a popular school and even competitive sport.
Tchoukball is fun for beginners right from the first minute. The movements are simple and natural, and it is only when the level of play is increased that movements become complex and quite a spectacle!
Good physical shape is needed to practise this discipline, the rules are easy to follow, and, since it is a non-contact sport, teams can be mixed.
An interesting variant of this sport is beach-Tchoukball, which is played with bare feet. There are various beach-Tchoukball tournaments, the most famous of which is held in May in Viserba di Rimini in Italy, called the ‘BeachTchoukball Festivals’.

The panel
The panels are some of the characteristic elements of this sport and they are innovative and part of the attraction of Tchoukball. A panel is made of a metallic frame (1m x 1m) and, internally, a dense net made from elastic cables. Since it is set at an angle (55°), when the ball hits it, it rebounds of the panel at the angle it was thrown at. After playing for a while, every good player must know the fundamental principles of the ball bouncing off the panel: the direction it bounces off at is symmetrical to the direction it was thrown at, and this concerns both the vertical and horizontal plane. Therefore, a ball thrown from the right will bounce off to the left and a throw from below will bounce off into the air (a lob). A point is awarded when a player shoots and then the ball falls to the floor, thus it is very important that players know these rules so they can play well both defensively and offensively.

The main rules

How to score a point
- A player scores a point for the team if, after rebounding off the panel, the other team does not manage to catch the ball and it falls to the floor (outside of the semi-circle).

A player gives the other team a point if…
- he/she misses the panel;
- he/she makes the ball bounce outside of the court after it has been shot at the panel;
- if the ball falls into the off-limits area when it rebounds off the panel;
- if the ball directly hits him/her after bouncing off the panel.

A player commits a foul if he/she…
- moves bouncing the ball;
- takes more than three steps with the ball;
- passes the ball for a fourth time (a pass is counted when the ball is thrown to a team member and if it hits a team member);
- drops the ball;
- obstructs the other team during play;
- goes into the off-limits semi-circle before the ball leaves his/her hands when passing or shooting;
- touches the ball with the lower leg (under the knee);
- catches the ball when it rebounds off the panel if it was shot by his/her team;
- makes a ‘bad bounce’, that is, when the ball hits the frame of the panel and does not rebound off because it hits the metal or springs.

Other important rules…
- Possession of play changes after a foul and begins again from where the foul was committed.
- At least one pass must be made before shooting at the panel following a foul.
- Players cannot shoot at the same panel three times in a row.
- Each team can shoot at both panels.
- An official games last for three thirds of 15 minutes.

TCHOUKBALL

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