2. Why is the Hockey Rules Board always changing the rules?
Please be assured that the Hockey Rules Board does not change rules for the sake of it! There are three main reasons for changes.
One reason is to keep up with technical advances. The development of synthetic playing surfaces, player fitness, stick manufacturing and coaching tactics has changed the game and it is important that the rules keep pace with such changes.
Another reason for change is to address safety issues. Everyone’s view of safety and liability has changed over the years. For example, thirty years ago goalkeepers did not wear helmets but today’s standards and personal expectations demand increased protection.
A third reason is to insure that hockey continues as a popular sport throughout the world. In today’s fast paced electronic age, the public, especially young children, are attracted by sports they see on television. The Olympic movement has recognised this and are now including more attractive and exciting sports in their programmes. Whether one likes this or not, it is very clear that, if a sport is to attract young players and indeed keep it’s place in the Olympics, it must be an attractive game to watch and to play. Hockey has considerable room for improvement in this area and the Hockey Rules Board together with the FIH is aware of this.