If you’re wondering how to play netball, you’re probably male or you didn’t grow up in Australia. Anybody who studied in this country would have been exposed to netball as part of the physical education syllabus at some point in their school career.

Traditionally, netball was a game for girls, but mixed and social netball have become increasingly popular in recent years. More and more males are showing interest in playing netball.

Given the Diamonds’ — Australia’s national netball team — success in international competition, the sport plays a role in Australian pride and culture. Netball, of course, in itself is an exciting and challenging game; people’s interest could very well be rooted in the fascination of the game.

If you want the basics on how to play netball, here are important points you should know:

  • Two teams of seven players go against each other to gain or keep possession of the ball.
  • The team in possession of the ball runs, jumps, throws, catches, etc. with the purpose of moving the ball into its goal circle from where it may be shot for a goal to be scored.
  • Meanwhile, the other team uses defence tactics to prevent a goal and to steal the ball.
  • The team with the most number of goals wins the match.
  • Players have designated areas in which they can do their part.
  • Play restarts after goals with the teams alternating ball possession.
  • Players are expected to be physically, technically, mentally, and in every other way prepared to play the game. They must be familiar with the rules and comply with them, as well as participate in a fair, sporting, and safe manner.
  • Coaches are tasked to ensure that their players are prepared to comply with regulations and play a fair, safe, and sporting game.
  • Umpires are responsible for implementing the rules of the game and conducting themselves with fairness, impartiality, and consistency. With Melbourne Social Netball, they also often double as coaches across the games. Imparting knowledge in this manner is part of the organisation’s commitment to building education and rapport with beginner players. Incidentally, coaching isn’t limited to the beginners. Even higher players are treated to instruction on more detailed rule interpretations, which should help them improve their game.

Netball rules espouse the core values of fair play, equal opportunity, mutual respect, and safety. Every party involved in the match is expected to proceed with discipline and sporting behaviour.

You can better understand the above by watching a game. See what goes on for yourself by attending a match, usually held at one of the following venues: Riverside Golf and Tennis Centre, Melbourne High School, Richmond Recreation Centre, Flagstaff Gardens, and Ryan’s Reserve.

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