Rules of Fistball

What is fistball?

Great question! First of all, we recommend you watch this handy video to get a quick overview...


The Basics

Field & Equipment

A standard field size 50 x 20m, usually played outdoors on natural grass

There are other field variations, including an indoor version on a smaller court (40 x 20 m), and dynamic 2v2 and 3v3 variations on small courts. 

A thin ribbon-like red and white net is stretched between two posts up to two meters in height across the centre line.

A standard fistball is hollow, filled with air and is made of leather, similar in size and weight to a football (soccer ball).

Players & Formations

Two opposing teams consisting of five players each compete on either side of the net, on the two half-fields, similar to volleyball. Substitutions can be made without limitation between points.

Standard positions consist of two attackers closest to the net, on each sideline (with one usually designated as the "main" attacker), one setter in the middle of the field, and two defenders in the back corners.

Players can rotate as required strategically, but each player will generally hold a fixed position during points.



Each point begins with a service, performed from behind the 3 metre line within the server's half.

A toss of the coin determines first serve in the first set, after which the team that lost the last point or committed the last error makes the next service. 

Players can touch the ball up to three times to hit over the net, however players can only hit the ball once within each phase of play. One bounce is permitted before each contact.

Each well-performed phase of play will contain the following three hits in order - a defensive hit, a set, and an attacking shot 


Players strike the ball across the net from one half of the field of play to the opponents' half – using only their arm or closed fist.

A point is won when an opponent is unable to return a hit back across the net and into the opponents half, or makes a service fault

Matches consist of sets where the first team to 11 points wins the set, however a team must win by 2 points to win the set, up until a maximum of 15 points (i.e. a set can be won 15-14).

The number of winning sets varies depending on the game class, but is generally played to best of five or three.


Want to know more?

Official Rules of the Game

History of Fistball

Photos & Video on our Media page

Find out more from the IFA

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