Games are divided into four periods of seven
minutes each, with a two-minute interval
between periods. One point is scored when
the ball is thrown or shoved completely
past the face of the goal. In case of a tie, two three-minute
overtime periods are held; if necessary, two more are
played until a winner is decided.
Players wear caps of contrasting colors for
easier identification; the official rules stipulate
white for one team, blue for the other, and
red caps for the goalies.
A water polo team consists of seven players:
a goalkeeper and six field players. In addition,
each team keeps six substitutes in reserve.
With the exception of the goalkeeper, each
player must tread water the entire time, never
touching the bottom or sides of the pool, nor
may they take the ball beneath the surface
of the water.
History, and Fast Facts
- For complete information about playing,
coaching, and watching water polo, visit
the EdGate Community Education Gateway's School
Athletics Center: Water Polo page.
- Learn more
about the sport of Water Polo at USA
- Tap into the last Olympics articles and
features about the men's and women's water
polo teams on CBS
Sportline's Olympics 2000 site.
- Stoneridge Water Polo provides a comprehensive glossary of
- Learn about
water polo; its history,
rules, and news; or get a schedule of
Olympic events on the Athens 2004 site.
- What does it take to play water polo?
Check out the IOC Web
site to find out.
- Did you know that when water polo began,
players rode on floating "horses" made
of wooden barrels? Find out more interesting
water polo facts from Hickock
- Find Water Polo plays
and drills or learn more about coaching
- Olympic and other International water
polo competitions are played by FINA regulations;
however, local American high school competitions
are usually played by NCAA regulations and
you can check the NCAA
Website for their regulations.
- Study the competition on the FINA site,
which provides news and biographies about
water polo teams from all across the world.
General Sports Links
Olympians will compete in dozens of sports this summer. Even though Gateway
to the Summer Games can't feature them all, you can learn about each and
every one by visiting the sites listed below.