The History of Floorball
Floorball was created in the 1970s in Gothenburg, Sweden. It was developed from the game of ball hockey and started as something played for fun at schools. Soon floorball began to become popular in Scandinavian countries like Finland, Sweden and Norway. It was then developed into a sport. Soon many countries had national associations, and in 1986 the IFF was founded.
There are many other names floorball is known as, such as salibandy (in Finland), unihockey (in Switzerland) and innebandy (in Sweden). Bandy is a sport similar to hockey, and the names ‘innebandy’ and ‘salibandy’ translate to ‘indoor bandy’.
In 1986, one of the world’s largest floorball leagues, Finland’s Salibandyliiga was formed. Floorball was recognised by 7 countries by 1990 and the first European Floorball Championships was held in 1994, when there were 14 countries recognising floorball. In 1996, the first men’s world championships were held, and 20 nations played floorball, 12 of which participated.
Now, in 2009, floorball is played in almost 80 countries. Of which, 49 have national floorball associations. There is at least one national association on each continent of the world, excluding Antarctica. Floorball was recognised by the IOC in 2009 and the IFF hopes that floorball will be included as a demonstration sport at the 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games. The IFF intends that floorball will be in the 2020 Summer Olympic games.