IHF announces new steps in the development of handball

17 Jul. 2021

IHF announces new steps in the development of handball

International Handball Week, celebrated by the International Handball Federation (IHF) between 12 and 18 July, focused on the evolution of handball from its humble roots, in all its disciplines, including indoor handball, beach handball, wheelchair handball and children’s handball.

However, the IHF is also looking to the future, constantly shaping and improving the vision of the sport for the years to come. With the COVID-19 pandemic imposing lockdowns throughout the world, technology is becoming more and more important, underlining the importance of connectivity between the world, irrespective of geographical location and time zone.

Therefore, the IHF has been eyeing a revamp of its Education Centre, keen to bring handball closer to its core audience, with the focus put on the shareholders implicated in the sport, including players, coaches, physical education teachers, delegates, referees and fans.

The future is digital and this also applies to handball, as the IHF is constantly striving to improve the links between the actors involved, with a serious revamp of its portal, an update to the IHF Virtual Academy, releasing new features to the mobile app and a clearer and cleaner version of the Official IHF Rule Interpretation section.

The aim of the next steps made by the IHF to become more digital is to streamline the user’s experience on both the web portal, but also on the mobile app, with an information centre that is targeting coaches, referees, players, delegates, sports medical personnel and teachers, while also migrating the current content of the existing IHF Education Centre to the new portal.

The IHF Virtual Academy, an integral part of the IHF Education Centre will be updated, as its importance and merits were clearly displayed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Interactive live seminars, presented by the top lecturers of the IHF, on-demand e-learning, a knowledge library and tests related to the seminar topics will also be available for attendees, with a chat function implemented where users can communicate with the lecturers.

The IHF mobile app will also receive an update that will incorporate seminars from the IHF Virtual Academy, IHF licensed courses and Zoom integration ready for coaches, referees and delegates.

Moreover, handball rules and the IHF Rules Interpretation will also be implemented in the app, with detailed videos and the correct interpretation of the rules being only a touch away for a better transparency of the sport.

Another big step in integrating fans into the new vision of the IHF has been the creation of the ‘Be A Manager’ game, where fans throughout the world were able to create their own team and compete against each other in a fun, competitive game.
Immersing in the game has never been easier, as users can create a dream team with only a click, and get rewarded for their player’s actual performance in the competition. 

The game was launched during the 27th IHF Men’s World Championship in Egypt earlier this year and the second edition took place in July, during the friendly three-nation tournament, which saw Germany, Brazil and Egypt preparing for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The top two players of this ‘Be A Manager’ Anniversary Edition won CHF 5,000 each for their achievements.
However, the development of the digital world will also make its mark in handball, as the IHF will dip its toes in the eSports market, with the aim of creating its own eSports competition in four years’ time.