What is Hockey? – History, Rules and Regulations

Individuals in ancient Greece well-played a game with a ball and a horn, and there is a study available that dates back to 510 BC. The ball and horn relate to hockey. Also, the two individuals are in an encounter while others are searching. So, scientists vary in their interpretation. When a few interpret it as a team sport, and a few others interpret it as a personal, one-on-one activity.

Few scientists think of it as the ancestral game of field and lawn, such as ground billiards and hockey. The study also found near-identical depictions in European and Egypt manuscripts. And the proof belongs to the 14th to the 17th century. Proof exists for a game of hockey played with the ball and carved wooden stick in East Asia around 300 BC.

The Daur individuals of China in inner Mongolia are well-played beikou, and it is a match that indicates hockey. They have played for about more than 1000 years. During the Ming dynasty, individuals in China played Suigan, a match that showed ground billiards and hockey.

Khiladi Khundi is a match that individuals played in the Punjab state during the 17th century, and it showed hockey in several methods. The natives of Chile of South America belong to the 16th century well-played a match named Chueca that had common features with hockey.

In Iceland and Ireland, the games in which individuals used sticks to drive a ball into the opponent’s goal or score date back to the early middle ages. Parishes and Villagers in the 12th century in Britain and France played a team ball match called La Soule. And it is a long-distance form of hockey.

During the early modern era and middle ages, matches such as hockey are one of the privileges of aristocracy and clergy. And, rules limited the common man from playing the matches.

The ancient Persians used polo: for cavalry training, such as hockey on horseback. The game was also used for military training purposes too. The hockey origin and its first appearance were not clear. And historians think that it was in the rule when King Edward III issued it. Also, the historian John Strype did not use it when the proclamation was translated in 1720.

The modern era in the early 19th century started to grow from English publishing schools. The first club in 1849 was at Blackheath in South-east London. The form in Middlesex cricket clubs for winter matches had the framework for modern regulations.

The hockey association was set up in 1886. And in 1895, the first international competition took place. The international guidelines board started to operate in 1900. In 1908, hockey entered the summer Olympics and was also played in the year 1920.

The game found no place in 1924 in Olympics, and the event led the European countries to form a federation of international hockey that was an international regulating body. The game once again found its option in the 1928 Olympics.

In the history of the match, the two oldest trophies are the Irish Junior cup and Irish Senior Cup, which date back to 1895 and 1894. India 1928 entered the Olympics and won all the matches between 1932 and 1956. They won the match in the years 1980 and 1964.

Artificial turf began to replace conventional grounds in the early 1970s. They altered the speed of the game, and the nature of the play improved. New tools became famous, and the new guidelines came into the place of the old ones.

The supporters of women’s hockey planned the international federation in 1927 for the Women’s Hockey association. The two regulating bodies merged in 1982, and Women’s hockey entered the Olympics in 1980.

The dimensions of metrics are in use according to the guidelines of the International Hockey Federation. The pitch looks rectangular that measures 91.4 m * 55 m. The main place at every end measures 3.66 m wide and 2.14 m high, and the baseline and the distance between the center measures 22.90m. The charge shot area that measures 0.15 m in diameter with the center is at 6.40 from the center of every goal region. The circle of shooting is 15m from the baseline.

Weight of the Stick

The stick weight varies on the player’s position on the field, and it depends on the positions of the players occupied. The lightweight aids easy ball movement, and it also aids the player in shooting the ball quickly. A lightweight stick of hockey that weighs up to 0.5 kg is good for the players who play forward.

A medium-weight stick for a midfielder that weighs between 0.5 to 0.6 kg is also useful. The medium-weight not only aids in quick movement and also helps with the hard striking of the ball.

These heavyweight sticks are good for hard-hit balls and aid in clearing the ball from the defensive region. The sports players occupy the defending positions as they require heavyweight sticks that begin to weigh between 0.6 to 0.7 kg.

Length of the Stick

There are different lengths of hockey sticks, and the sportsperson prefers the sticks as per the height. For instance, it might be tough for a short player to play with a long hockey stick as it makes the movement a tough one. To make a choice better, the sticks differ in length from 0.66 meters to 0.97 meters.

Hockey material

Hockey sticks are composed of hickory wood or mulberry. In today’s era, composite materials and fiberglass are also used to make the sticks. The fiberglass sticks are hard-hitting and durable, and the wood sticks absorb shocks. Players at the start use wood sticks, whereas those who have rich years of experience play choose the composite sticks.

Toe of the Stick

There are four kinds of hockey sticks when choosing the toe style the stick, and they are Midi, Hook, Short, and Maxi. For the midfielders or the beginners, the toe style midi, which is half an inch huge than the short, is the best one. The short toe style is good for the players who play in the forward position, and the design is best for dribbing. It is useful to stop the ball and helps to dribble the ball.

The defenders are the players in the field who prefer the maxi toe style as it has a huge surface area. This is better to hit the ball hard. It also has a J-shaped large toe that complements the maxi toe style in the best manner. When the defender is not comfortable with the maxi toe style, they might choose for hook toe style stick.

Mouth Guard

Hockey is a fast-paced game, and the sticks, arms, and legs are always on the move. The players who hit on the face are a huge possibility, and wearing a mouthguard is a good precautionary measure. Rash guards, electrical tape, socks, balls, grip, and stick bags are other tools that a player must use to play hockey.

Throat Protector

As the hard striking shots are harmful to life, the international federation of hockey has made it compulsory to wear a throat protector. The design protects the throat and the neck from any accidents, and the protector wraps around the neck. Also, the protector is mandatory for goalies of all ages.

Helmet

It is one of the vital guards the goalie has to protect their face or head from accidents. To choose the helmet, the visibility to check the ball is vital. Most importantly, comfort and quality are the other elements that you must consider.

Position of the Players in Field Hockey

 The teams that actively move for the other goals post include eleven players on every side. Also, among them, ten individuals are the field individuals, and the remaining individuals are the goalie. The goalie has to guard the goalpost while the other people may take positions as a midfielder, forward player, or defender. In field hockey, every position requires particular skills and responsibilities from the players, and the players get positions as per their capabilities.

Forward players

The sports players who take forward positions should have high sprinters and fast lightning reflexes. They create the primary offensive team line, and the players must be able to hit the ball properly and score points for the team. To create the probabilities of making points, the players must pass, deflect and move the ball easily in the inner circle.

Defenders

Being a defender in hockey is a tough thing as the players have to see the attacking opponents. And, they must protect the target and clear the ball. The defenders must be able to swift on the feet and play better to get possession of the ball. They should be able to overpower the opponent to get the ball clear from the defending zone. 

How to play hockey

When anyone wishes to play hockey, learning how to shoot the ball or play the shots, passing the ball, and dribbling the ball are the necessary and basic parts of the play.

How to play hockey

Slap Shots

To play slap shots, players must apply only half backswing, not like the complete swing in the drive shot. Also, the players stick and hold the hands about eight inches apart and don’t hold the stick at the top. The shot is useful in shooting, controlling, and passing the ball.

Push passes

When an individual pushes the hockey ball without any backswing of the stick, the shot is a push pass. This shot needs the physical strength of the sports players as there is no swing of the stick. The players might send the ball to target quickly in playing the shot and are specifically useful to score points.

Flicks

Flicks are useful shots to score points and fast ones. These flick shots are useful to tackle the defenders, and goalies might be difficult to stop it. The ball might be in the air in flicks, and the players might not be able to strike too high to get it over the opponent.

A player has to tilt the head of the stick to play the flick at an angle to reach under the ball. The player has to flick their wrist to get the shot properly.

Straight Dribble

This is the most used dribble in hockey, and the ball never prevents or leaves the player from the opponent. The players in the straight dribbling use the basic grip or even hold the stick in front of them. Also, you must hold the stick to the right side of the body is also necessary. The players must not allow the ball to lose contact with the stick. They must be able to run forward to keep their head up to understand where to pass the ball. Transition into shooting or passing is simple and quick in straight dribbing.

Dribbling Pull-back

Dribbling pullback is straight dribbling with the pullback of the ball. When an individual is in motion and has to eliminate the opponent, they might apply the dribbling pullback. It aids in retaining possession of the ball while also aiding in moving forward. The individual player who is in action will do the pulling back and push forward till she or he wishes to shoot or pass for the target.

Forehand Pass

Any kind of passing that is composed off the right side of an individual is a forehand pass, and it is the best method to pass in hockey. The forehand passes when playing, and the sportsperson should ensure the ball is at the right side and the bottom of the stick. The player must position his face to the body of his teammate.

When it comes to pushing pass, the ball should be behind the back foot of the sportsperson or player to provide the pass with power. For a hit-and-slap pass, it is better to position the ball in the middle of the feet.

For a push pass, the ball must be behind the back foot of the player to give the pass with more power. For a slap-and-hit pass, positioning the ball in the middle of the feet is enough.

To make the pass, the player has to sweep the stick easily while shifting the weight of the body from the back to the front. Moreover, the stick and the body should face the target after releasing the ball.