Sports Summary

Football five-a-side has officially been a part of the Paralympic program since the Athens 2004 Paralympic Games.

It is governed by the International Blind Sports Federation and follows the same rules as the International Federation of Associated Football, except there are five players per side, the game is played in two 25-minute halves, the field of play is smaller, all team members except the goalkeeper play with eyeshades, the ball makes a noise when it moves, and there is no offside rule.

Get involved in Para-sport – register your interest today!

Events & Disciplines

Every Football match is played between two teams with four blind athletes and one sighted or visually impaired goalkeeper on the field as well as five substitutes. Additionally, each team has a guide behind the opponent’s goal to direct the players when they shoot.

A Football match lasts 50 minutes with two halves of 25 minutes each and a 10-minute half time in between. The winning team is the one that scores the most goals during a match.

A men’s eight team tournament is run at the Paralympic Games.

Rules & Equipment

The Ball

It is made of leather or special synthetic material, has a diameter of 70 cm and weighs 450 grams. It has an internal sound device so the athletes can hear it.


The athletes of a team are obliged to wear the same kit (uniform), which is comprised of a shirt, a pair of shorts and socks. The colours of the goalkeeper’s uniform must be different from those of his teammates, as well as from those of the referee and his assistant (linesman).

Shin Pads

Special protective pads made of plastic or another soft material, such as rubber or caoutchouc, which are placed inside the athlete’s socks, mainly to protect his shins.


Special shoes with studs on the soles, to help the athlete’s movement in the ground.

Goalkeeper’s gloves

Special gloves which help the goalkeeper in stopping the ball and preventing the scoring of a goal, while protecting his hands.

Blindfolds or mask

The athletes who are inside the field of play, with the exception of the goalkeeper, wear blindfolds or a mask to guarantee equality among the players.


International Blind Sports Association

International Paralympic Committee


We encourage those wishing to explore football five-a-side to contact their state federation in the first instance. The national federation link below provides information on the national high performance program leading to competing internationally and at the Paralympic Games.

National Federation
  Organisation Website
  Football Australia
  Australian Blind Football
State Federations
State Organisation Website
ACT Capital Football
NSW Football NSW
Northern NSW Football
NT Football NT
QLD Football QLD
SA Football Federation SA
TAS Football TAS
VIC Football VIC
Football West