Handball is a team sport in which two teams of seven players each (six outfield players and a goalkeeper on each team) pass a ball to throw it into the goal of the other team. A standard match consists of two periods of 30 minutes, and the team which scores the most goals wins. The game is quite fast and includes body contact, as the defenders try to stop the attackers from approaching the goal. Contact is allowed only when the defensive player is completely in front of the offensive player; i.e., between the offensive player and the goal.
Any contact from the side or especially from behind is considered dangerous and is usually met with penalties. When a defender successfully stops an attacking player (who loses the ball over a line), the play is stopped and restarted by the attacking team from the spot of the infraction or on the 9-metre line.