High Five Netball Rules

Updated July 19, 2017

High Five Netball was created in 1895 by Clara Gregory Baer, a physical education instructor at Newcomb College in Louisiana. Netball has various similarities to that of the sport of basketball. It is estimated that there are about 20 million Netball players in over 70 countries participating in competitions today.

The Court

A netball court measures approximately 30.5 meters long and 15.25 meters wide, slightly larger than that of a basketball court. The middle of the court is marked by a "centre circle" measuring 90 centimetres in diameter. Each end of the court has a "shooting circle" measuring 4.9 meters in a semicircle radius. Each goalpost, located on each back line in the centre of the shooting circle and consisting of a basketball hooplike structure with no backboard, measures 3.05 meters high. The ball used during an official game looks like a basketball but has a similar weight and size of a volleyball.

Player Positions

There are seven position players allowed on the court at one time. The positions are a goal shooter, a goal attacker, a wing attacker, centre man, wing defender, goal defender and goal keeper. Each of the positions are allowed in certain areas of the court, which is split up into thirds: attacking, centre and defending. Only the goal shooter, goal attacker, goal defender and goal keeper are allowed in the shooting circles. The centre is the only position allowed to go in any of the three zones, excluding the shooting circles.

Duration of the Game

All matches consist of four quarters. Amateur matches play with six-minute quarters, while professional and Olympic levels play with 15-minute quarters. All players on the squad must play a minimum of two quarters at any point during the match.

Playing the Ball

A player who receives the ball can take a maximum of one dribble and then must either pass or shoot within four seconds. They must keep their pivot foot on the ground before either shooting or passing.


A goal can only be scored by two positions on the court: the goal shooter and the goal attacker. All attempts on goal must be shot within the designated shooting circle.


A throw-in is attempted from the point on the sideline of where the ball went out. When the match is ready to resume, the player has four seconds to throw the ball back into play.

Illegal Moves and Penalties

A player may not do any of the following during the course of the game: deliberately kick the ball, take more than one dribble, hand off or roll the ball, try to grab the ball from an opponent, throw the ball while on the ground, grab onto the goalpost for leverage or support, regain possession of a ball dropped by that same player, and throw the ball over a complete third of the court (at least one player has to touch the ball in each third when advancing up court). Any of these violations result in a free pass for the opponent.

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About the Author

Alex Oppenheimer has been writing Sport and Recreation related articles since 2001. He has previously written for publications such as The Miami Herald,, (University of Miami Athletics), (Florida High School Sports) and The Metropolitan Golf Association (NY). He holds a degree in Sport Administration from the University of Miami (FL).