The history of water polo is pretty long. Although the official birth date was considered to be in the 19th century, when William Wilson in England gave us the game, different games that resemble water polo are known all over the world.
Water polo is played with to teams of seven persons on each team. The size of the ball used in water polo is the same size as a soccer ball. The only difference is that the ball used for water pool is made from light waterproof material, like nylon. The game is played in the pool which is filled with water only at the minimum level which is 1.8 meters. The size of the pool for water polo can be anything between 20 by 10 and 20 by 30 meters. The main idea of water polo is to throw the ball into the opponents' goal net.
Water polo was the first team sport in the Olympic Games. It was in 1900, but at that time only men's teams played water polo in the Olympic Games. But, since 2000, the situation is different and today women's teams can also play water polo in the Olympic Games.
The basic skills for water polo are swimming, handling the ball, and treading water. Of course, of all of the basic skills for water polo, swimming skill is essential. A team member can't play the game effectively if he doesn't swim well. But, the ball handling skill is also an important element of the basic skills for water polo. The rules of water polo don't allow field players to touch the ball with both hands. Therefore, it is very important to know how to handle the ball with one hand. The rules also forbid you to touch the bottom of the pool and that gives you another item for the list of basic skills for water polo, treading water.
There are different techniques of treading water these days, but the most common technique is called the egg beater. The name is caused by the movement of the swimmer's legs which are similar to the movements of an egg beater. Such a technique allows you to keep in the horizontal position for a long time and that position may be constant which is good for the game. The egg beater technique allows for jumping out of the water. A swimmer only needs to kick their legs a bit faster for a short period of time. That can be used to throw the ball into the ball net or to pass the ball to another player.
The water polo game can last for different times. It has four periods and the duration of these periods is defined for each competition. For, example, students' water polo game periods last between five and six minutes. In the Olympic Games, water polo periods last for eight minutes.
As for the time, a water polo game as well as an ice hockey has time of the field or out of the pool in this case, because a water polo player can be sent out of the pool as a penalty for 15-20 seconds. Or, for the rest of the game in the case of serious fouls.
As with most of the team games in water polo, there is an offensive and defensive position in the pool. The basic position is 3-3. There are three offensive players and three defensive players in the pool. There are also other positions in the game that are called umbrella or mushroom because of the shape of the players when they go into formation in the pool. These days there is much information on water polo available so you can easily learn more about water polo strategies.