Irish Olympic Handball Association

Refereeing Handball

A game of handball is officiated by four officials – two referees, a scorekeeper and a timekeeper.

Should the referees disagree on any occasion, a decision is made on mutual agreement during a short timeout; or, in case of punishments, the more severe of the two comes into effect. The referees are obliged to make their decisions "on the basis of their observations of facts". Referee judgements are final and can be appealed against only if not in compliance with the rules.

Games with only a single referee are allowed by some national bodies in special cases like illness on short notice.

The referees position themselves in such a way that the team players are confined between them. They stand diagonally aligned so that each can observe one side line. Depending on their positions, one is called court referee and the other goal referee. These positions automatically switch on ball turnover. They physically exchange their positions approximately every 10 minutes (long exchange), and change sides every five minutes (short exchange).

The IHF defines 18 hand signals for quick visual communication with players and officials. The signal for warning is accompanied by a yellow card. A disqualification for the game is indicated by a red card, followed by a blue card if the disqualification will be accompanied by a report. The referees also use whistle blows to indicate infractions or to restart the play.

The referees are supported by a scorekeeper and a timekeeper who attend to formal things such as keeping track of goals and suspensions, or starting and stopping the clock, respectively. They also keep an eye on the benches and notify the referees on substitution errors. Their desk is located between the two substitution areas.


Referee Workshops

The Irish Olympic Handball Association runs Referee’s Workshop regularly.

The most recent workshop tool place on October 24th 2021 in UCD in partnership between the IOHA’s Technical Director and the Referees Committee. 

Refereeing workshops are aimed at existing and new referees and provide an opportunity to brush up on the rules of the game. 

The cost of the course is €50 
Limited places available!

To express you interest in the next Refereeing workshop Contact us via email

Table Officials Training

The Irish Olympic Handball Association runs Officials workshops regularly.

Officials workshops are aimed at existing and new officials and provide an opportunity to improve on scorekeeping and timekeeping of a game. 

The cost of the course is €50 
Limited places available!

To express you interest in the next Refereeing workshop Contact us via Email



Coaching

Wherever there is an athlete, there is also a coach. Some coaches start out as athletes, however, most are parents, teachers, sport fans, and community members who want to be part of a sport they love and make a contribution.  

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