Talk:Water polo

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Offensive and Defensive players[edit]

A question about this sentence in the Introductory section:

"Unlike many other team sports, such as association football, players do not tend to be only an offensive or defensive player, but rather play as either of these positions depending on where the ball is."

In Water Polo, the players currently in the water instantly change between offensive and defensive roles as possesion of the ball changes. This is also true in Basketball and I think in Association Foobtball (soccer), and not in Gridiron Football (American Football). I think the sentence should read

"Except for the goalkeeper, individual players are not predominantly assigned to offensive or defensive roles, but switch roles instantly as one team or the other gains possesion of the ball, much as players do in Basketball or Association Football."

Do you agree? (talk) 22:36, 29 May 2014 (UTC)

After waiting for a response, I went ahead and made the change. It was automatically reverted because I reversed the sense of the sentence. Yes! Besides being awkward, I think the old sentence it just plain wrong. Am I wrong? I am not knowledgable about association football. (talk) 17:04, 16 June 2014 (UTC)

What you are saying is not quite true: the roles of switching between attack and defence is not the same as in basketball and association football. In association football, the defenders do not generally sprint to the attacking end to score goals, nor do the forwards generally serve as one of the last lines of defence. In water polo this is different: all players are generally near the ball (other than the goalkeepers) and generally only play very near to the attacking goal (in attack) or very near their own goal (in defence). They play in either of these positions depending on where the ball is (as the article says). Of course they have to swim from one end to the other, but the action tends to happen in one of these two places.
What you are saying would imply that in association football if team A gained possession of the ball then all players on team A would become attackers. This is not (generally) what happens. In association football the defenders in this scenario would likely stay near their goal. Although they would be on the attacking team, this would not make them attackers. However, in water polo if team A gained possession of the ball then all the players who had been defenders (other than the goalkeeper) would immediately sprint to the other end of the pool to become attackers.
I agree with your second point though. The role of the player does not depend solely on the position of the ball: of course it also depends on the team who have possession of the ball. I will reword this for clarity. Hope that helps. JZCL 13:51, 28 June 2014 (UTC)


I have added a rules of water polo article as it struck me that this was fairly fundamental to water polo as a topic. I have not had time to fill in the individual sections yet but have made the section headings - anyone please feel free to add to the empty sections. JZCL 20:52, 14 February 2015 (UTC)

I think this will be very helpful in editing down the current page. Thanks for the template. Apriestofgix (talk) 18:24, 4 February 2016 (UTC)

Number of players[edit]

It seems that though the FINA rules clearly state teams play with seven players (goalkeeper plus six), some leagues play with six and the World Junior championships are to be played with six.[1] How can we approach this? The number of players appears in several places. We could perhaps change the lead to " A team consists of 6 field players (five in some leagues and championships) and one goalkeeper in the water..." and the next mention under "Number of players" to "Seven players from each team (six field players and a goalkeeper) are allowed in the playing area of the pool during game play; in some leagues and championships teams play with six players (five field players and a goalkeeper), but the descriptions in the rest of this article are based on the larger size." That's terribly clunky. Any thoughts, anyone? Pinging BenjaminL42 who alerted me to this and JZCL who has done so much for this article already, but of course other input's welcome. NebY (talk) 18:51, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Hi, I have now finished my exams, so I can dedicate a bit more time to this. NebY, you are quite right that there has been speculation regarding changes to a number of aspects to the game including, as you mentioned, the number of players. Regarding FINA - nothing definite has happened yet - there has been some testing around the world but I think that stating that it is likely to change could be a case of WP:CRYSTALBALL. What I propose to do is add a note to the introduction and a section or two to the number of players section, citing the page you found. But yes, regrettably, this is looking more and more likely. Thanks, JZCL 14:17, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

Wrong information regarding distance covered by players during a game[edit]

The article states:"Water polo is a physically demanding activity; action is continuous, and players commonly swim 3 kilometers or more during four periods of play.[7]". While the referred document indeed states this figure, it just can't happen. Four periods of play (assuming the player plays every single second of the match) amount to 32 minutes. The world record for 1500 meters freestyle is just under 15 minutes, or in other words, about a minute per 100 meters. Good luck with swimming twice the distance in 32 minutes without having the benefit of an initial dive or pushing off the wall every 50 meters (even without playing)... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:54, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

Cleaning up the Talk Page[edit]

This article is still in need of some significant rewriting. I think the first step is cleaning up the talk page, and removing some of the threads that have been addressed, or are excessively old (some are 10+ years ago now). Apriestofgix (talk) 17:20, 28 January 2016 (UTC)

I second the motion, and will let someone else who knows what they are doing to do it. My bad.--☾Loriendrew☽ (ring-ring) 01:39, 29 January 2016 (UTC)
I have archived the majority of the Talk page that dates back more than 3 years. If anyone wants to view it they can with the link at the top of the discussion which links to /Archive 1. Apriestofgix (talk) 18:22, 4 February 2016 (UTC)

Clean Up[edit]

I have started work on the Rules of Water Polo page to help move some content away from this page. Please help contribute to that page as able. Once we have that page in good shape, I think we should edit down the sections here to include a brief summary, and direct back there.

I have moved large sections to that page. Starting to look a LITTLE betterApriestofgix (talk) 00:28, 11 February 2016 (UTC)

I have also started cleaning up sections that were orphaned or duplicated. Apriestofgix (talk) 18:58, 4 February 2016 (UTC)


In part of the ongoing cleanup, we have a SERIOUS lack of references on this page. We will need to try and get things cited. Just wanted to call that out.Apriestofgix (talk) 00:28, 11 February 2016 (UTC)

Skills Section[edit]

A large part of the skills section is un-sourced, and not very encyclopedic. Many other sports pages do not even have a skills section (or it is greatly reduced). What are thoughts on cutting that down, and shortening all the descriptions or eliminating them entirely? Apriestofgix (talk) 22:57, 19 August 2016 (UTC)

I removed this section as there seems to be no objection (although it seems there is very little activity on the talk page at all). Apriestofgix (talk) 21:59, 9 November 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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Sources section removed[edit]

I removed the entire "Sources" section here. We have proper citations in the "References" section and the "Sources" section seemed to be nothing but a coatrack to list various coaching books (including three copies of the same book in three languages). If any of those coaching books are actually being used as references please add them back as proper citations. Meters (talk) 01:52, 15 August 2018 (UTC)

And now an IP has attempted to add a coaching book to the lead. Meters (talk) 19:30, 17 August 2018 (UTC)

Contitnental championships[edit]

Is there African Water Polo Championship and Oceania Water Polo Championship? Africa and Oceania each get 1 spot at World Championship. So there has to be some kind of qualification tournament.

There is Asian Water Polo Championship (not to be mixed with Asian Cup or Asian Games). It was, at least, held in 2009, '12, '16. Some information is included in '09, '12 and '16 editions of Asian Swimming Championships. (talk) 19:52, 13 September 2018 (UTC)

Shot types[edit]

There is a surprising amount of shot types. I think it would be good to add it to the article or even give it its own page. I am not too familiar with the sport, but here is a few:

  • lob shot
  • push shot
  • Backhand shot
  • wrist shot (doesn't have the movement of the overhand shot)
  • skip shot
  • Overhand shot
  • Tip (deflection) shot

Two players in a line work to make this shot. The first player fires the ball into the direction of the goal. The second player, as the ball comes over or near him, puts his hand up to sweep the ball into the back of the net by giving the angle of the shot a different trajectory.

  • trick shots
    • Kicking the ball in is a good example.
    • Another is to draw your defender by putting the ball near him and instead of swimming over him/her when you start to spin leg up,keep your arm straight, and spin around hard releasing the ball at an appropriate time to shoot and catch the goalie off guard- Riley (talk) 01:28, 29 January 2019 (UTC)

The dimensions of the swimming pool ?[edit]

--Jerome Potts (talk) 17:46, 7 April 2019 (UTC)

The dimensions are stated on the Rules of water polo page which is linked in the main article. Apriestofgix (talk) 21:26, 17 April 2019 (UTC)