Rules + Regulations
Volt hockey is similar to other forms of hockey, such as field hockey and ice hockey. The objective of the game is to outscore the opposing team within two fifteen-minute periods, scoring points by maneuvering the ball into the opposing team’s goal.
Volt hockey is played 3v3, with all players operating specialized wooden power wheelchairs. Teams typically consist of about 3-6 players including substitutes. Substitutions can take place during most stoppages in play by notifying the referee, and can be made as many times as wanted throughout the game.
Volt hockey is typically played indoors on a basketball or other athletics court. A rectangular, flexible, plastic barrier defines the perimeter of the playing field.
The dimensions of the playing field are approximately 20 m x 14 m. The playing area is divided in half by the center line, with a goal at either end of the court.
There is space between the back of the goals and the barrier for players to circle around the nets. In front of each goal is a semicircle called the goal field, and between the goal field and the center line is the penalty line and penalty spot.
Matches begin with the ball being passed from the center spot to a teammate. The team without the ball must be behind their penalty line at the whistle.
Balls that enter the goal field and stop moving before a goal, or remain in the goal field for 10 seconds become a “goaltender ball”, which is a free kick for the goaltender at the edge of the goal field.
“Free balls” are given when a penalty occurs and are taken near the area where the violation occurred, such as where the ball went out of bounds or illegal contact was made. Generally, physical contact should be avoided. Intentional physical contact, or physical contact which stops and/or influences the free movement of an opposing player is a violation resulting in a free ball against the team who initiated contact. Paddles are allowed to touch when going after the ball, but other direct contact without the ball results in a free ball for the other team. For free balls, goaltender balls, and starting kickoffs, the ball must either be touched by another player or strike one of the playing area boundaries before the same player can touch the ball again.
“Referee balls” occur when play is stopped for reasons other than game violations, such as when the ball has been run over, becomes stuck to a player’s chair, or is completely blocked off and immovable, such as being pinned to the wall behind a player's paddle. Referee balls also occur when two violations are committed at once. Referee balls take place at the center line on the side of the court closest to where play was stopped. The ball is released at a height from the referee between two awaiting opposing players, similar to a face-off in ice hockey. The other players must stay behind their own penalty line.
When the ball is in the defending team’s half, one player at a time may enter the goal field as the goalkeeper. Only the goaltender is allowed in this area. An attacking player’s paddle or chair may not enter the area when shooting, nor may a second defensive player enter, unless the previous goalkeeper has left the goal field. If an attacking player enters the goal field, a goaltender ball is ruled. If two defensive players occupy the goal field, or a player drives the ball through or passes directly to a teammate in the goal field, a “penalty shot” is awarded to the attacking team. In a penalty shot, the goal is shrunk to be 1 m wide, the ball is placed at the penalty spot, and a player from the attacking team (may be a player on the bench) takes a single shot with no goalkeeper present and all other players behind the center line. The shot must be taken as a direct shot on goal. A made shot results in a goal for the player's team and the opposing team restarts at half court. A missed shot results in a goaltender ball for the opposing team.