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Floorball vs. Hockey: What's the Difference?

By Janet White || Updated on November 10, 2023
Floorball is an indoor team sport played with lightweight sticks and a plastic ball, while hockey encompasses various forms including ice hockey, field hockey, and played with a puck or ball.

Key Differences

Floorball is played indoors on a hard surface using lightweight sticks and a small, light plastic ball. Hockey, however depending on the type (ice, field, or roller), is played on ice, grass, or a hard surface with heavier sticks and a puck or ball.
The rules of floorball emphasize non-contact play, focusing on speed and skill. While, hockey especially ice hockey, allows more physical contact and body checks, making it a more physically demanding sport.
Floorball is typically played in a smaller arena compared to hockey fields or rinks. Whereas, in hockey, the playing area varies significantly with ice hockey rinks being larger than floorball courts.
Equipment in floorball includes lightweight sticks, a plastic ball, and minimal protective gear. On the other hand, hockey requires more protective equipment like helmets, pads, and, in ice hockey, skates.
The gameplay of floorball is generally faster due to the lighter ball and quick passes. In contrast, hockey's gameplay pace varies with the type, with ice hockey being fast-paced and field hockey being more strategic and slower in comparison.

Comparison Chart

Playing Surface

Indoor, hard surface
Ice, field, or hard surface


Lightweight sticks, plastic ball
Heavier sticks, puck or ball

Physical Contact

Minimal to none
Varies, often more physical

Protective Gear

More extensive, especially in ice hockey

Gameplay Speed

Generally faster
Varies, ice hockey is fast, field hockey more strategic

Floorball and Hockey Definitions


Small Court Game.
The floorball court is smaller than a hockey rink.


Varied Surface Sport.
Ice hockey is my favorite type of hockey to watch.


Indoor Team Sport.
We play floorball every Thursday at the sports center.


Strategic Team Sport.
Field hockey requires a lot of strategic thinking.


Lightweight Equipment.
Floorball uses lightweight sticks for quick gameplay.


Physical Contact Game.
Hockey often involves body checks and physical play.


Fast-paced Action.
Floorball is known for its rapid and dynamic play.


Diverse Gameplay.
Hockey's pace varies depending on the type played.


Non-contact Play.
Floorball emphasizes skill over physical strength.


Protective Gear Required.
In hockey, wearing a helmet and pads is essential.


An indoor ball game played with a stick like hockey.


Ice hockey.


Field hockey.


Street hockey.


(Commonwealth) Field hockey, a team sport played on a pitch on solid ground where players have to hit a ball into a net using a hockey stick.


(North America) Ice hockey, a game on ice in which two teams of six players skate and try to score by shooting a puck into the opposing team's net, using their sticks.


A variation of hockey, such as roller hockey, street hockey, shinny, or ball hockey.


Senseid|en|darts}} {{alternative form of oche.


A game in which two parties of players, armed with sticks curved or hooked at the end, attempt to drive any small object (as a ball or a bit of wood) toward opposite goals.


The stick used by the players.


Hockey played on a field; two opposing teams use curved sticks to drive a ball into the opponents' net


A game played on an ice rink by two opposing teams of 6 skaters each who try to knock a flat round puck into the opponents' goal with hockey sticks


What is hockey?

A team sport played on various surfaces, using sticks and a puck or ball.

Can hockey be played indoors?

Yes, especially ice hockey and indoor field hockey.

Is floorball equipment the same as hockey?

No, floorball uses lighter equipment and minimal protective gear.

Is floorball a contact sport?

It’s generally non-contact, focusing more on skill and speed.

What types of hockey are there?

Ice hockey, field hockey, and roller hockey are the most common types.

How big is a floorball field?

Smaller than a hockey rink, suitable for indoor play.

What skills are important in floorball?

Speed, agility, and stick-handling are crucial.

What is floorball?

An indoor team sport using lightweight sticks and a plastic ball.

How is floorball different from hockey?

Floorball is played indoors with minimal physical contact, while hockey includes more physical play and can be played on ice, field, or hard surfaces.

Where is floorball most popular?

In Scandinavian countries and parts of Europe.

What is the origin of floorball?

It evolved from indoor hockey varieties in the 1960s and 1970s.

Is hockey an Olympic sport?

Yes, both ice hockey and field hockey are in the Olympics.

How long is a typical floorball game?

Usually around 60 minutes, divided into three 20-minute periods.

What’s the main objective in hockey?

To score goals by getting the puck or ball into the opponent’s net.

Can floorball be played outdoors?

It’s designed for indoor play, but can be adapted outdoors.

How many players are on a hockey team?

Varies by type, but typically six per side in ice hockey.

What is the standard hockey rink size?

Varies, but an NHL ice hockey rink is 200 feet by 85 feet.

Are floorball sticks similar to hockey sticks?

They are lighter and more flexible than hockey sticks.

What are common injuries in hockey?

Injuries often include bruises, sprains, and sometimes fractures, due to the physical nature of the sport.

Is hockey always a physical sport?

Ice hockey is, but field hockey has more restrictions on physical contact.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.

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