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Background Information


Floorball is a very fast and dynamic team sport, where the five field players are changing places on the court, as well as substituting with the bench players very often. The ball moves quickly from player to player, situations change very fast, and goals can be scored at either end in a short space of time.

The sport has similarities with ice hockey and indoor hockey. Floorball is traditionally played indoors with a stick and a light-weight ball. The court set-up is similar to ice hockey and there are 6 players on the court at a time for each team, including the goalkeeper.

At The World Games, the team rosters are smaller than normal (14 players rather than 20) and the matches more action packed with the three periods shortened to 15 minutes each (instead of 20) with 10-minute intermissions.


Aim of the game

Each team competes to score more goals than their opponents to win a game.


Playing system

- Two groups of four teams

- Round-robin games in both groups

- 4th placed teams from both groups compete for 7th place

- 3rd placed teams from both groups compete for 5th place

- The two best teams from each group qualify for cross-over semi-finals (1v2)

- Losing semi-finalists compete for Bronze

- Winners of semi-finals play a final match to compete for Gold


How is Floorball played?

Unlike most other team-based ball sports that use a half or quarter system, each match at The World Games is played in three periods of 15 minutes. During that period, players are often on the court for only 30 seconds at a time before quickly changing with their bench.

Substitutions can be made at any time within a specified area at the team bench, and time is not stopped for substitutions. Play only temporarily stops when the ball goes out of the court or the whistle is blown for a free-hit or penalty. Teams can play-on very quickly from these situations so the ball is in play for a large amount of the game time. 

Athletes primarily play the ball with their stick, however, passing or stopping the ball by foot is allowed. The body can be used to stop the ball and body contact between players is limited to shoulder-to-shoulder contact when competing for possession of the ball. There is no offside and the only restricted area on the court is a small goalkeeper area which court players may not step in or cross.

The match time is stopped only when the ball is not considered in play, which is when it goes out of the field of play, or in the case of penalties, goals, time-outs, and penalty shots. 

Group matches can end in a draw, but in a play-off match teams will play ten minutes extra time, and the team that scores first wins. If the game is still drawn after extra-time, a penalty shoot-out with five players per team decides the winner.

Floorball in a nutshell


How do you play?

The choice of tactics usually depends on what is known about the opponents. For the chosen tactics, it is essential that every player knows what to do and that they all work as a team.

Teams usually play in 'lines' - a group of players who have specific positions (forward, centre, defender) and are familiar with each other's play. Each line might play a specific role in the team, such as being the scoring line or defensive line, but all players must be able to attack and defend and quickly transition between these roles on the court at any time. 

Usually, the team has decided the system they will use to forecheck, meaning how they will group or position themselves to take on the opponent’s attack, and defend their own area, perhaps using a set formation such as 1-2-2 or 2-1-2. There are common tactics for forechecking and defending, but when it comes to attacking, the players have much more freedom to be creative and make their own scoring opportunities.

The goalkeeper doesn't use a stick, but plays with the hands and wears a protective mask and padded clothing. When they take possession of the ball they often make fast throws down the court creating an attacking opportunity for their team.

Players can be penalised for certain infringments which result in them sitting out of the game for at least 2 minutes. During this time their team plays with one less player giving the opponent a numbers advantage. 

Each team is allowed one timeout of 30 seconds during the match.


Two referees control a Floorball match and are generally positioned on opposite sides and ends of the court.

In Floorball, the main rules are: 

- There is no offside

- The player can’t play the ball above the knee level with the stick nor raise the blade above waist level when hitting the ball  

- You are not allowed to push, tackle or obstruct the opponent, but can play shoulder to shoulder when competing for possession of the ball

- You are not allowed to hit, block, lift or kick an opponent’s stick

- You are not allowed to play the ball with your stick between the opponent’s legs

- The field players are not allowed to enter the goalkeeper area in front of the goal 

- The goalkeeper plays without a stick and cannot play the ball with his or her hands outside the goal area

- Penalties given depend on the level of the infringement and include free-hits, penalty shots, and player penalties ranging from 2 minutes to a full match suspension


Every goal is worth 1 point, including a score from a penalty.

The winning team gets two classification points. Group games may end in a draw, leading to split points between the two teams.


When an offence is made, a free-hit is awarded to the opponent. If offences are bad enough, penalties are given.

Free-hits are taken from the spot that the offence occurs. The ball must be played from a stationary position and the defending team must be at least 3 meters away from the ball.

Players can be sent off for two, four, ten minutes or for the rest of the game, depending on the severity of the offence. A penalized player is not allowed to leave the penalty bench area until their penalty time has finished, which is either when a goal is scored or when their penalty time ends. 

Typically, free-hits are given for hitting a player's stick, incorrect tackles, or blocking a player's movement. Penalties are generally given for more serious infringements such as roughing, blocking a stick, or incorrect body contact. Playing the ball with your hand or head deliberately may also result in a 2-minute penalty. Unsportsmanlike behaviour can result in a 2+10 minute penalty and more serious offences can be penalised with a match penalty where the player is excluded entirely from the rest of the match and may face further disciplinary actions. 

If the offence occurs in a goal-scoring situation, a penalty shot may be awarded.

Athletes and Teams to watch out for

Who will shine?

The title of Men's World Champions has traditionally been fought between Sweden & Finland, with Finland dominating in recent years winning the gold in 2016 and 2018, but Sweden took it back at the 2020 event (held in 2021).

Sweden were the winners of TWG 2017, narrowly beating Switzerland. It is expected that these three countries, as well as Czech Republic, will be the main contenders for the title at TWG 2022. 

From the top four teams watch out for the 2020 World Champion MVP, Ville Lastikka from Finland as well as Sweden's goal-scoring hero Tobias Gustafsson. Pascal Meier in the goals for Switzerland will be hard to get past and Czech Republic will be hoping their young gun, Filip Langer, can be at his best. The fifth placed Latvia is the remaining European team. Their top player, Morics Krumins, plays in Finland and his team made it all the way to the national league finals. Perhaps he can lead them to a surprise medal spot.  

The 2020 World Championships were the official qualification event for TWG, and Thailand earnt their spot at TWG by being the best of the Asia Oceania teams. They won a thrilling last game against The Philippines with the game being decided on penalty shots. 

The USA & Canada played a 2022 World Championship qualification event in February and Canada came away victorious, so USA will be looking for revenge at their home TWG. You can expect a close match whenever these two meet.  

Appearances in TWG 2017 Yes
Appearances in TWG 1997 Yes
Title holders in TWG 2017

Team Men

  1. Team SWE
  2. Team SUI
  3. Team FIN
Qualified athletes with results in past TWG
  • Manuel MAURER(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Patrick MENDELIN(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Ondrej NEMECEK(CZE): 4. in TWG2017
  • Nicola BISCHOFBERGER(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Tim BRAILLARD(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Sami JOHANSSON(FIN): 3. in TWG2017
  • Nico SALO(FIN): 3. in TWG2017
  • Mans PARSJO TEGNER(SWE): 1. in TWG2017
  • Emil JOHANSSON(SWE): 1. in TWG2017
  • Luca GRAF(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Keven GLANZMANN(USA): 5. in TWG2017
  • Paolo RIEDI(SUI): 2. in TWG2017
  • Eemeli SALIN(FIN): 3. in TWG2017
  • Tobias GUSTAFSSON(SWE): 1. in TWG2017
  • Johan SAMUELSSON(SWE): 1. in TWG2017
  • Reed HEARNS(USA): 5. in TWG2017
  • Rasmus ENSTROM(SWE): 1. in TWG2017
  • Mikko VAHA-VAHE(USA): 5. in TWG2017
  • Lukas BAUER(CZE): 4. in TWG2017
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