What is Korfball?

So, you ask, what is korfball? Well, korfball is a mixed-sex, Dutch non-contact team sport. It could be described as similar to netball, with elements of basketball, although it evolved alongside these sports, as opposed to being derived from them. The aim is simply to score more baskets than your opponents. The main elements are described below.

Who are the Mavericks?

Mavericks are one of 3 korfball clubs in Edinburgh, and compete in the Scottish Korfball League. We pride ourselves on being a fun and welcoming club and work hard to achieve on and off the court. Our committee can be found below - if you have any questions at all, don't hesitate to contact any one of us via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

About korfball

1. Korfball is (possibly uniquely) designed as a mixed sport - men and women play side by side. However, while women are equal in the tactics of the game, unequal strength is not an issue, as the men may only mark men and women may only mark women. 

2. Individual skill is of course essential, but belonging to a team means teamwork; running with the ball or dribbling is not allowed. A player who receives the ball while running must stop within two steps and either pass the ball or shoot. 

3. Thirdly, korfball is a tactical game. The rules follow this principle and prevent physical strength from dominating the game. Blocking, tackling and holding your opponent are not allowed. 

4. Kicking the ball or hitting it with your fists are also disallowed – Korfball is a game of passing and catching. The more efficient a team is at these basic skills, the better it is. Also, one is not allowed to move the post, which would of course make it harder to score. 

5. Another rule is that although any player can attempt to score (unlike netball), when they are defended, a shot is not allowed. That occurs when the defender is closer to the basket and is facing his/her opponent within arm's length, and is attempting to block the ball. This rule, combined with the one-on-one marking, means that movement around the court is essential, the key being to break away from one’s marker to produce a shooting opportunity. 

6. The basic game mechanics are that each team of eight (four men, four women) are split evenly into two divisions, one attacking, one defending. These divisions are effectively separate units throughout the match (and are restricted to one half of the pitch), and only swap from attack to defence (or vice versa) when two goals are scored, or after a set amount of time, depending on competition format. This makes it important to develop all-round skills – it isn’t good enough to only be a specialist defender, as it may be the case that such a player could spend most of a match in attack! 

Fancy giving it a go? Come along to an Edinburgh Mavericks training session!

Key Links:

Korfball Official Rules

Watch a full match

Scottish Korfball Association