Floor hockey is a family of indoor hockey games. 5 variations exist: three variations in the style of ice hockey, and the other two in the style of bandy, one of which is called floorball in English speaking regions. Two of these variations involve the use of wheeled skates and are categorized as roller sports under the title of roller hockey. Quad hockey uses quad skates and looks similar to bandy, while inline hockey uses inline skates and is of the ice hockey variation. All styles and codes are played on dry, flat floor surfaces such as a gymnasium or basketball court. As in other hockey codes, players on each team attempt to shoot a ball or puck into a goal using sticks, usually with a curved end. Floor hockey games differ from street hockey in that the games are more structured, and two use wheeled skates. The variations which do not involve wheeled skates are sometimes used for training children to play ice hockey and bandy in a training format known as dry land training.
Floor hockey codes derived from ice hockey were first officially played in Montreal, Quebec, Canada in 1875, but the game’s official creation is credited to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame inductee, Samuel Perry Jacks, better known as “Sam Jacks”. Jacks is the individual credited with both the creation of the official skateless game derived from ice hockey and codifying its first set of rules in 1936. At the time, Jacks was working as assistant physical director at the West End YMCA in Toronto. His achievement was later recognized by the United Nations.
Floor hockey is a physical fitness sport in many public schools for physical education class.
A version of ringette was introduced as a sport in the Winter Special Olympics in 1932. In 1970, the Special Olympics added team floor hockey as an event, with the distinction of it being the only team sport under its purview.
The Canadian Ball Hockey Association (CBHA) was formed in 1991 to provide more formal leagues of ball-based floor hockey. The CBHA runs leagues for men, women, and juniors, and organizes National Championships for each division.
In 2003, the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association Hockey Committee released a baseline set of rules for intramural floor hockey for college campuses across the United States.