The main object of handball, like any team sport, is to gain the highest number of points to win the match. Handball is played by two teams of seven players each. The main purpose of each team is to score into the opponent's goal, and to prevent the other team from scoring. The ball may be passed, thrown, tapped, rolled or dribbled in any direction, subject to the restrictions laid down by the rules of the match. The playing court (indoors) shall be a rectangular, flat, hard surface free from obstructions. For the main official competitions of the IHF, the court dimensions shall be 40 metres in length by 20 metres in width, measured from the inside edge of the boundary line. Each team consists of 14 players. The team must use a goalkeeper at all times. No more than 7 players (6 court players and 1 goalkeeper) may be present on the court at any time. The remaining players are substitutes. Substitutes may enter the match, at any time and repeatedly, without notifying officials as long as the players they are replacing have already left the court. The team which has scored more goals than the opponent is the winner. The match is tied if both teams have scored the same number of goals or no goals at all. The regular playing time is two (2) halves of 30 minutes. The half-time break is 10 minutes.
The players are penalised during a match according to the legal regulations. In some cases the IHF disciplinary commission may suspend a player for one or more matches. A player or a team may be disqualified from the tournament due to breach of sport ethics, rules, etc.
In the recent Beijing Olympics the mens tournament was won by France and the womens tournament was won by Norway