Women’s handball team fined for not wearing bikini bottoms

The women’s beach handball team from Norway was fined $177 each for wearing shorts instead of bikini bottoms during the Euro 2021 tournament.

“We are back!! Finally played our first trainingmatch[sic] in forever[.] We are so happy to be back in the sand,” the team posted to Instagram, showing off their red and blue outfits.

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The European Handball Federation requires women to wear bikini bottoms of a specific size, while male players can wear shorts and shirts. The federation threatened to disqualify the women’s team if they didn’t stick to the dress code.

The decision to fine the team has been criticized by many sports commentators, including tennis icon Billie Jean King.

“The Norwegian Women’s Beach Handball team is facing fines for wanting to wear shorts instead of bikini bottoms. The bottoms are not to cover ‘more than 10cm on any sides.’ The men’s team wears shorts. The sexualization of women athletes must stop,” King tweeted.

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“Women should have the right to have a uniform they think is suitable for performing in their sport,” said Norwegian Handball Federation head Kare Geir Lio.

“I don’t see why we can’t play in shorts,” Martine Welfler, one of the Norwegian players, said. “With so much body shaming and stuff like that these days, you should be able to wear a little bit more when you play,” she added.

The International Handball Federation says they are “looking into” the uniform requirements but has not announced any future changes.