Nikola Foretić, Vladimir Pavlinović, Šime Veršić

Shooting velocity is one of the most important features that influence successful shooting performance in handball. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine differences in shooting velocity between shooting positions in top level handball. A total of 784 shots were analyzed. Shooting velocity was measured with iBall (SELECT, Denmark), that has a built-in chip for tracking and distributing data in real time regarding ball velocity, shot detection, shot position and the position of the ball in the goal (Kinexon, Germany). Shooting position (SP) is defined as a geometrical point and a tactical situation from which a shot was taken. Differences between shooting positions were calculated using the Kruskal-Wallis test. Significant difference in shooting velocity was noticed between shooting positions (Chi-Square=95.83). Post-hoc analysis revealed that shots executed outside the nine meter perimeter are significantly faster than from other shooting positions. Shots taken outside the 9-meter perimeter require the fastest shots since players cannot outsmart goalkeepers with modified slow shots (e.g. lob shot, shot with rotation or “dry leaf” shot). Modified slow shots are commonly used in closer distance shots like wing shot, fast break shot, breakthrough shot or penalty shot. In these situations, players have more demanding angle in which shooting velocity is not always an advantage.

Keywords: shot velocity, ball velocity, professional handball, throwing, team sport

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