The second day of the IFF Associations’ Meeting concentrated on the IFF Covid-19 survey and on how to continue after the pandemic, the IFF study on Sexual Harassment and Abuse in Floorball and the Swedish Equality project Fifty/Fifty. In addition, the Future of Floorball proposal was discussed.
Outcome from the IFF Covid-19 survey & Insights from the pandemic
Ms. Sarah Mitchell, from the IFF staff, presented the outcome of the IFF Covid-19 impact study 2021. The study was made via an online survey and from a total of 74 Member Associations the IFF received 32 responses (42%). The survey included different categories: Competition, Participation, Referees, Organisation, Media, Marketing, Transfers, Finance, National teams and IFF Events.
– No doubt that the cancellation of competitions was the biggest effect of the pandemic that federations had to deal with. Those who could play had to play without spectators and often also had to modify the game. From not having competitions the biggest impact has been the number of licensed players and income. This is where we have to look at how the numbers are recovering and hopefully building on from that, Ms. Mitchell informed.
Further analysis of the results and analysis will be done and a follow-up study is planned for 2022.
The Member Associations then discussed the pandemic and how it has effected their organisation and presented the following insights:
- Difficult to know how many kids did not start to play
- Loss of many top level players in the leagues without the international tournaments
- Some lost a lot of floorball referees
- It is also important to continue with the online development tools introduced during the pandemic
Study on Sexual Harassment and Abuse (SHA) in Floorball
Ms. Mari Myllärinen, from the IFF staff, presented the study made during 2021 as part of her thesis.
The questions in the study were: to what extent the national member associations have implemented prevention strategies on the topics of sexual harassment and abuse and what kind of motives, barriers and facilitators are present in the implementation process. A total of nine federations took part in the study (AUS, CZE, ESP, FIN, NOR, SGP, SUI, SWE, UKR).
– The topics are not new in sport, so as part of my studies I wanted to investigate the situation in floorball. The results were that only a few associations had implemented an adequate number of preventive strategies on sexual harassment and abuse. Guidelines an police record checks were most often implemented. 77,8% agreed that prevention of SHA is an important, Ms. Myllärinen said.
The reasons to implement strategies were safeguarding, responsibility, raising awareness and education as well as Governmental enforcement. Barriers for implementation were the lack of resources (time, money, staff), the distance from the clubs and players, the culture and lack of authority. Different facilitators were also recognised like the cultural change with the #MeToo movement. In addition, assistance was also found very important and the responsibility of the clubs, so strong relationships are needed.
Ms. Myllärinen’s full study will be published on the IFF website under Scientific Studies of Floorball during next week.
Presentation of the Swedish Equality project Fifty/Fifty
Mr. Anders Jonsson from the Swedish Floorball Federation presented the Fifty/Fifty project.
The Fifty/Fifty project includes the gender equality online course Fifty/Fifty, which is made available to all Member Associations and clubs within the global floorball community. It includes six sessions of quick, easy introduced ”start where you stand” questions and tasks in focus, with long term step by step development.
– The aim with the online course Fifty/Fifty is that everyone can work in the right direction without having to start with comparing oneself against other clubs or national, quantity objectives. The six sessions combine inspiration, facts, discussion and reflection with a focus on what you and your club/association could gain from greater gender equality, Mr. Jonsson informs.
Why international launch?
– When discussing the Swedish Floorball Federation’s 40 year anniversary, and how to aim for another 40 years of development, the idea of an increased, international openness or collaboration was a natural ingredient. The Fifty/Fifty course suited this perfectly. This combined with the fact we already had a positive response from the IFF when asking to make Fifty/Fifty reachable for all countries, really made up our mind. Fifty/Fifty, we believe, will help the floorball community’s gender equality efforts, such as the IFF’s 30/70 % objective, Mr. Jonsson explains.
Starting from January 2022 the Fifty/Fifty will also be available free of charge to all clubs and federations within the International Floorball Federation. Visit www.fifty-fifty.nu/en to learn more and register interest.
Future of Floorball – Broader discussions
IFF Secretary General Mr. John Liljelund and the IFF Central Board Member and IFF Rules- and Competition Committee Chair Mr. Martin Klabere presented the content of the Future of Floorball proposal. The Future of Floorball format includes 17 players and the playing time is 3 x 15 minutes effective time, with 10 minute intermission.
– It is extremely important that we test the new playing format, otherwise it is impossible to know if the format is good or bad. Due to the lack of floorball events organised during the pandemic, we want to continue with the test events. The next IFF test tournament will be the Men’s World Floorball Championships 2022 Qualifications, EuroFloorball Cup, EuroFloorball Challenge and The World Games 2022, Mr. Klabere explains.
The participating Member Associations were then asked to provide feedback on the proposal as a SWOT analysis. Some of the feedback was received on the Future of Floorball format:
- Can start thinking of new strategies to grow
- More attractive to potential new sponsors & spectators
- Easier to enter the sport
- More action in the game
- Better TV product
- More teams ready for international events
- More countries to fight for the medals
- Cheaper for federations
- Can be challenges to sell the idea to some players & floorball people
- Development of the young players can be a weakness as there are less players in the roster