20 Most Important Indoor Soccer Rules

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Indoor soccer, also known as Arena soccer, which is a fast-paced and exciting sport that has gained popularity in recent years. Played on a smaller field and with fewer players than traditional outdoor soccer, indoor soccer requires quick reflexes, precise ball control, and excellent teamwork. In order to ensure fair play and safety for all players, there are specific indoor soccer rules that govern this game.

From the number of players allowed on the field to the size of the ball used, these rules help to maintain consistency across games and leagues. Whether you’re a seasoned player or new to the sport, understanding these rules is crucial for success on the court. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the key rules of indoor soccer that every player should know.

Here are 20 Most Important Indoor Soccer Rules Explained Briefly

  1. Number of players: Each team can have a minimum of five and a maximum of seven players on the field for U12, including a goalkeeper. For players above 12 years old, each team can have a minimum of five and a maximum of six players, with a goalkeeper included.
  2. Substitutions: Teams can make unlimited substitutions throughout the game, but only during stoppages in play.
  3. Duration of the game: Indoor soccer games typically last for two 20-minute halves with a short halftime break of 5 minutes.
  4. Kick-ins: When the ball goes out of bounds, it is brought back into play with a kick-in instead of a throw-in.
  5. Goalkeeper restrictions: The goalkeeper cannot leave their designated area and touch the ball with their hands outside of it.
  6. Fouls and penalties: Similar to outdoor soccer, fouls can result in free kicks or penalty kicks depending on severity.
  7. Slide tackles: Slide tackles are not allowed in indoor soccer due to safety concerns.
  8. Offsides: Unlike outdoor soccer, there are no offsides in indoor soccer.
  9. Corner kicks: When the ball goes out of bounds over the end line by the defending team, a corner kick is awarded to the attacking team.
  10. Direct and indirect free kicks: Free kicks can be either direct (allowing for a shot on goal) or indirect (requiring another player to touch the ball before a shot is taken).
  11. Penalty shootouts: In case of a tie at the end of regulation time, penalty shootouts are used to determine the winner.
  12. Yellow and red cards: Referees have the authority to issue yellow and red cards for unsportsmanlike behavior or dangerous play.
  13. Handball violations: If any part of a player’s arm comes into contact with the ball intentionally or unintentionally, it results in a handball violation.
  14. Time wasting tactics: Players are prohibited from deliberately wasting time by holding onto possession for too long or excessively delaying restarts after stoppages in play.
  15. Ball size and weight restrictions: The ball used in indoor soccer must be smaller and lighter than an outdoor soccer ball.
  16. Goal size restrictions: The goals used in indoor soccer are smaller than those used outdoors.
  17. Penalty areas: There is no penalty box in indoor soccer; instead, there is an arc around each goal that indicates where fouls resulting in direct free kicks should be taken from
  18. Ceiling height restrictions – For safety reasons, there is usually a minimum ceiling height requirement that must be met for an indoor facility hosting an indoor soccer game.
  19. Goal clearance – After making a save or gaining control of the ball within their own penalty area, goalkeepers must distribute it within six seconds
  20. No shoulder charging – Unlike outdoor football, which allows shoulder-to-shoulder challenges between players who are contesting for possession of the ball; shoulder charging is forbidden under futsal rules

These rules may differ slightly based on league regulations or specific tournament rules but generally provide guidance on how indoor soccer is played across various competitions worldwide.

5 Key Differences Between Standard and Indoor Soccer

Standard International SoccerIndoor Soccer
Field SizeLarge, outdoor field with dimensions ranging from 100-130 yards in length and 50-100 yards in width.Small, indoor field with dimensions typically around 131 feet in length and 65 feet in width.
Number of PlayersEach team has 11 players on the field, including a goalkeeper.Each team has up to 5 players on the field, including a goalkeeper.
Duration of GameGames are typically played for two halves of 45 minutes each, with a short halftime break.Games are typically played for two halves of 20-25 minutes each, with a short halftime break.
Ball SizeThe ball used is larger and heavier than the ball used in indoor soccer.The ball used is smaller and lighter than the ball used in international soccer.
Playing SurfaceThe game is played on natural grass or artificial turf outdoors.The game is played indoors on a hard court surface, similar to basketball courts.

These are just some of the key differences between international soccer and indoor soccer, but they highlight how these two sports differ in terms of gameplay and rules.

The Structure of an Indoor Soccer Field

An indoor soccer field is typically smaller than an outdoor field, with dimensions ranging from 130-200 feet in length and 50-100 feet in width. The playing surface may be made of artificial turf or another type of synthetic material. Walls or boards are often present around the perimeter of the field, and there may be netting above them to prevent the ball from leaving the playing area. In some cases, the walls or boards may have markings to indicate different areas of the field, such as penalty boxes or corner kicks.

Player Positions at Indoor Soccer

Player Positions
Goalkeeper – Has a crucial role due to the smaller goal size. Shot-stopping, distribution, and communication are vital GK skills.
Defenders  1-2 defenders who need pace, agility, and strong tackling skills in 1v1 situations. Covering for teammates is critical.
Midfielders – 1-3 midfielders who transition quickly between attack and defense. Excellent close control and passing in tight spaces is essential.
Forwards – 1-3 forwards who take most shooting opportunities. Positioning, finishing, and hold-up play are key skills.

Key Skills You Need for Indoor Soccer

Skills you Need for Indoor Soccer
Ball Manipulation – Mastering feints, stepovers, drag backs to beat defenders
Balance – Maintaining composure when challenged by opponents
Close Control – Ability to keep possession in tight spaces using all parts of the feet
Agility – Being able to change direction quickly and explosively
Passing Accuracy – Precise ball distribution in tight areas
Shooting Technique – Placing shots accurately into small goals
Defensive Skills – Timing tackles well and shepherding opponents
Communication – Constant adjustments require good communication

In summary

Overall, learning and adhering to the rules of an indoor soccer match is key for a successful game. Whether competing in a tournament or just among friends, any dispute that arise should be settled through understanding the rules and fair judgement. It is a fast paced game which can create great excitement.

While some of the same rules apply to both outdoor and indoor soccer, there are still some distinct differences that set each apart from the other. Adaptability is necessary when playing in different venues across various countries as most places will have their own unique rules as well. Being aware of all these indoor soccer rules that can take your game to a whole new level and make it more enjoyable for everyone involved.

Frequently Asked Questions

Indoor soccer is typically played on a smaller, enclosed field with walls or boards that keep the ball in play. There are usually fewer players on each team and the game is often faster-paced than outdoor soccer. Additionally, indoor soccer may have different rules regarding substitutions and out-of-bounds play.

Yes, in indoor soccer, walls or boards are considered in play. This means that the ball can bounce off them and remain in play. Players can also use the walls to pass to their teammates or score goals. However, there are usually specific rules about how the ball can be played off the walls or boards.

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