Floorball and Inclusion Make a Good Fit

Floorball will continue to grow. What’s been particularly fun about the growth of this sport how and where it happens. One such area of growth is through Special Olympics and Unified Sports. I do think that there are a lot of options for Paralympic athletes as well.

As coaches, physical educators, or facilitators we’re tasked with figuring out how to make sports more adaptable and inclusive for our participants. Whether we need to adjust a piece of equipment or rule the goal should be to create opportunities for all. This is one of the great things about Floorball. It’s an inclusive and adaptable sport.

The International Floorball Federation has partnered with various organizations in order to spread floorball throughout the world.  As a result the IFF launched a number of programs and partnerships in order to bring floorball to the world.  In the past few years the inclusion of Special Olympics programs has continued to grow. At the very least the education and awareness of the sport as a Special Olympic sport has increased.  While these programs seem to be gaining traction I believe that Unified Sports is just as important a space to program.

For organizations or groups looking to be more inclusive floorball is a great sport to add.  The equipment and rules can be easily modified to be more inclusive allowing more players to engage in the sport.  Special Olympics has taken steps to build more inclusion through their Unified Sports programs which pairs athletes with and without intellectual disabilities on the same team.  Their focus is to break down stereotypes of people with intellectual disabilities.  The program seems to be growing and I believe adding floorball to the mix provides more opportunities for more athletes to be engaged in sports.

For physical education programs floorball can be used as an inclusive sport with all students regardless of ability. While it may take some creativity to find appropriate adaptations to equipment or rules it can and should be a priority to ensure inclusion for all.