WHAT IS RINGETTE?
Ringette is one of the fastest team sports played on ice. It is primarily a female sport. Ringette is a positive, dynamic and a fast-paced sport played on ice, where pure physical strength is replaced by speed and skill. The sport was invented in Canada and in Finland ringette has been played now for over 40 years. In Finland we have around 4,000 registered players. (Source: Finnish Ringette Association
Ringette has strong canadian roots
As a sport ringette is a Canadian invention, which has evolved into one of the fastest team sports played on ice. The sport what we today know as ”ringette” was invented 1963 by late Mr. Sam Jacks who worked as a director of parks and recreation for North Bay, Canada. Mr. Sam Jacks was known as a sport-enthusiast and introduced his idea of a new sport to the Society of Directors of Municipal Recreation of Ontario.
Mr. Sam Jacks himself, had also three sons who played hockey, but Jacks thought that girls and women should also have an opportunity and a right to skate and play a sport on the ice.
Ringette in a nutshell
Ringette, like hockey, is played on ice with skates and sticks with six players per team (5 players + goalie) on the ice at once. The objective is to score goals by shooting the object of play into the opposing team’s net at either end of the rink during stop-time periods of play.
But this is where the comparisons between ringette and hockey really end. The stick is straight. The object being pursued by the players is a rubber ring, not a puck. There is no intentional body contact. And the rules of ringette make it a wide-open and dynamic sport.
The emphasis is in the play-making and skating skills. Players cannot carry the ring across the blue lines on the ice. Only three players from each team, plus the defending goalie, are allowed in the end zones at the same time.
This keeps the play open, puts a premium on sharp offensive moves, and requires defending players to skate close to their opponents. Goalkeeper’s have their own marked creases, where players from neither team can enter. These features of the game demand the development of keen skating skills that give ringette players fantastic skating speed and agility.
In 2000, a 30-second shot clock was introduced to make the game even faster. The shot clock starts when a team gains possession of the ring, and if they have not taken a shot on the net within 30 seconds, a buzzer sounds and the ring is then awarded to the opposing team.
Since the early 1960s, the sport has continued to grow and currently boasts nearly 30,000 registered players on nearly 2000 teams, with over 8000 coaches and over 1500 officials.
Simultaneously the sport has grown side-by-side internationally and ringette is played in a number of countries around the world, including Finland, Sweden, the United States, France, Slovakia, Russia, the Czech Republic, and Abu Dhabi.
(Source: the text is an adaptation and includes many excerpts as such from original text by Ringette Association of Canada)
Ringette in Finland
Ringette was brought into Finland by the late Mr. Juhani ”Juuso” Wahlsten (1938-2019) in the year 1979. Ringette is played in Finland in over 50 ringette clubs and by 4,000 registered players ranging from local recreational level up to National Finnish Ringette League.
Youngest participants in the ringette are 3-4 year old children attending to Ringette Schools. There is no age limit in ringette and one can start a new hobby also on adult age, because in Lady Teams Ringette is played by women, who have not gotten familiar with the sport until later on adult age.
Read more about the history of ringette in Finland from the site of Finnish Ringette Association
The very first World Ringette Championship were held in 1990. Since then the World Ringette Championship has been held on a regular basis. Finland has won the title 9 times, first time in 1994.
Latest gold was won in Burnaby Canada, Ringette World Championship of 2019.
Finland is the reigning World Champion. Canada is holding the Title in Under-21’s.
HOW RINGETTE IS PLAYED?
Ringette is played with a ring and a straight stick.
The ring is hollow and made of rubber. Sticks are not recycled hockey sticks. Companies produce sticks with tapered ends with steel, aluminum or plastic tips. Different styles, flex and weight are available.
Ringette is played 5 on 5 plus goalkeepers.
Teams are usually made up of 11 to 17 players; with six skaters on the ice at the same time (a goalie, two defense, a centre and two forwards).
The ring is passed at every blue line.
A player cannot carry the ring over a blue line in either direction. The ring must be passed over the blue line to another teammate. That teammate is permitted to skate ahead of the ring carrier and already be across the blue line before the ring crosses it.
Players never enter the goalkeeper’s crease.
If the ring lands in or on the crease, the only player who can touch it is the goalkeeper. The goalkeeper usually picks up the ring and throws it to a teammate. The goalie has five seconds to pass it out of her crease.
Players have 30 seconds to take a shot on net.
Teams have 30 seconds to take a shot on goal after they gain possession of the ring. If time runs out on the shot clock, a buzzer sounds and the other team is awarded the ring.
In the offensive zones the game is played 3 on 3.
You will notice the free play lines (small red line at the top of the circles) on the ice. From this line to the end boards, it’s a game of 3 on 3. Players can rotate in and out of the free play zones producing a lot of movement and creativity.
Ringette players wear protective equipment.
Players wear a neck guard, elbow, knee, and shin pads and equipment that provides hip, and tailbone protection. Helmets with full-face mask are mandatory. The masks must have triangular or tight horizontal bars to prevent the stick from penetrating.
There is no intentional body contact.
Ringette promotes a no-contact policy when it comes to the physical aspect of its game. Penalties are given when a player, makes excessive body contact with another player, checks a player too high on the stick, trips, hits or interferes another player.
The rules of Ringette in a nutshell, you can find behind the following link (only in finnish):
HOW I CAN JOIN IN AND PLAY RINGETTE?
The schedules and contact information for our Skating Schools and Teams can be found on these webpages under the appropriate sections. We warmly welcome children, teenagers and adults of all ages interested in skating and in ringette, regardless of earlier experience, skill, gender, origin or religion.
You can join us at anytime during the season! So be brave and active and express your interest towards us by contacting us. We will guide you, advise you and gladly help you to get started on a new fast-paced hobby, in an good-spirited and welcoming club!
Read more about Skating Schools!
Read more about Teams!
RINK AND LINE MARKINGS?
Ice hockey rink is used as pitch in ringette. There are red lines painted on the ice at the both ends of the rink, between the blueline and the end of the rink. This redline is ’so-called-ringette-line’. In the middle between the ringette-lines all players can play simultaneously. Between the area of the redline and the end of the rink, in the attack- or defensive zone, can play only 3 vs. 3 players + goalie simultaneously. Via this rule the game stays dynamic and fast-paced. The goalkeepers’ have their own marked creese’s, where none of the other players can enter.
WHAT EQUIPMENT DO I NEED FOR SKATING SCHOOL AND FOR RINGETTE?
Good-enough equipment in the skating school are a helmet, skates and warm gloves.
Neck guard is needed too, but we can lend you a neck guard on behalf of the club on the first three (3) trial times, you can attend to skating school for free. You can begin at skating school also with figure skates and with a bicycle helmet. If you need to acquire skates, hockey skates are the preferred choice and ease learning the proper skating techniques. When you decide to continue in the sport, we recommend that you acquire a hockey helmet with a protective ringette facemask and hockey skates.
It is good to arrive at the Ice Hall / at the venue latest by 15 minutes before the ice starts. This way you’ll have enough time to suit up the gear. Do remember to choose such clothing, which makes movement fluent and is suitable for sports. Actually it is not that cold in the rink, so you do not need to wear the heaviest winter clothing in the rink.
As you decide to continue in the sport, also the required equipment evolves. In the official ringette games the obligatory equipment includes hockey skates, helmet with ringette facemask, knee- and elbow pads, hockey gloves and a neck guard. Other equipment used in ringette are ringette stick, ringette ring, shin pads, worn under the pants (or goalie pads), protective girdle with a ‘cup’ or a ‘jill’ ringette pants and a jersey. Goalkeepers use a stick and pads meant specifically for goalkeepers.
WHY CHOOSE RINGETTE?
Skating school of ringette provides the child an opportunity to learn to skate and gain new friends. You’ll join a vibrant, energetic and fast-paced team sport played on ice – ringette!
Skating improves in many ways kinetic and motoric development of a child and simultaneously it develops balance and agility. In Skating Schools child also learns teamwork and empathy.
WHAT ARE THE COSTS OF A SKATING SCHOOL?
You can attend to Skating School first three times for free. This we call so-called free trial period, after which you decide whether you want to continue at least for now. As the child continues after the free trial period, if the child attends once a week the cost is 25 euro’s per month. It is possible also to attend to skating school twice a week and then the monthly fee is 35 euro’s per month. In addition to the monthly fee once during the season, we invoice club membership fee 8 eur and seasonal fee of 50 eur.
The price of skating school includes:
Guided trainings on the ice
An Ice Card licence for skating/ringette schools with an accident insurance (information only in finnish behind this link)
Own ringette stick
A training shirt on loan
Ringette school tournament in spring
In overall as a club we feel that is important, that we can keep the costs both at our Skating Schools and in our Teams as reasonable as possible - so that the enjoying this our sport could be possible as many as possible.
Ringette – best option for girls who want to play team sport on ice!
Join our welcoming community!
Ringette Walapais ry
gsm. +358 (0)50 543 1720