Norway beach handball team members slam bikini rule: 'No good reason' for it

Norway beach handball team members slam bikini rule: 'No good reason' for it

July 21, 2021

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Norway beach handball team members slammed the sport’s governing body on Wednesday after receiving fines for their decision to wear shorts instead of the required bikini bottoms.

The European Handball Federation fined the team $1,770 – about $177 per player – for choosing to wear shorts in their bronze medal match against Spain. The organization said the players broke the uniform requirements set forth by the International Handball Federation (IHF).

Two Norwegian players appeared on ITV’s “Lorraine” and expressed their frustrations with the rule. The players said there was “no good reason” why players have to wear bikinis to compete in the sport.

“For our federation, there has been a lot of support,” Tonya Lurstaad said. “Every other federation as well – except the ones making the rules – have supported us. We’re so thankful for the support.”

She added: “We’ve just been told that this is the rule.”

Julia Bird said the team has gotten support from the men’s side in the row.

“People have been quite shocked that women today in 2021 can’t choose what they want to wear. It’s been overwhelming actually,” she added.

Lurstaad said there’s really no reason why they couldn’t compete in a T-shirt and shorts.

“If the guys can do it in a T-shirt and shorts, we should be able to do it in the same exact outfit.”

The IHF rules require women to wear bikini bottoms in competition.

“The Disciplinary Commission at the Beach Handball EURO 2021 has dealt with a case of improper clothing,” the governing body said. “In the bronze medal game against Spain on Sunday the team of Norway played with shorts that are not according to the Athlete Uniform Regulations defined in the IHF Beach Handball Rules of the Game,”

Norway’s Handball Federation agreed to pay the fines levied on the players and expressed support for them.

“We are very proud of these girls who are at the European Championships in beach handball. They raised their voice and told us that enough is enough,” the organization said.

“We are the Norwegian Handball Federation and we stand behind you and support you. We will continue to fight to change the international regulations for attire, so that players can play in the clothing they are comfortable with.”

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