Women's Handball Team Fined for Not Wearing Bikini Bottoms | 22 Words

The Norwegian women's handball team has been fined for wearing shorts instead of bikini bottoms at the European Beach Handball Championships.

The European Handball Federation, the sport's governing body, confirmed a $1,500 fine which is $150 per player for "improper clothing."

Instead of wearing bikini bottoms, the team wore shorts during a bronze medal match against Spain in Varna, Bulgaria even though the rules specify that women should wear bikini bottoms when they are competing.

A statement from the governing body read: "The Disciplinary Commission at the Beach Handball EURO 2021 has dealt with a case of improper clothing.

"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," the EHF said in a statement.

Norway's Handball Federation announced they would pay the fine for their players, as well as backing them. In a recent post on the Instagram page.

"We are very proud of these girls who during the European Championships in Beach Handball raised their voices and announced that NOK IS NOK! We are the Norwegian Handball Association stand behind you and support you. Together we will continue to fight to change the international regulations for clothing so that players can play in the clothes they are comfortable with!" the post read.

Kare Geir Lio, the head of NHF, also told AFP that its players should have "free choice" over their attire: "It should be a free choice within a standardized framework.

"The most important thing is to have equipment that athletes are comfortable with."

The governing body's rules state: "Women should wear a bikini where the top should be a tight-fitting sports bra with deep openings at the arms. The bottom must not be more than ten centimeters on the sides."

While the male players must wear "tight-fitting tank tops" and shorts that are "not too baggy" and "10 centimeters above the kneecap."

Katinka Haltvik also told the Norwegian media outlet NRK that the decision to wear shorts was very "spontaneous" and that they "felt threatened by the regulations."

"People cheered on us for going in front of several teams and taking the brunt. Not all teams can afford to pay such fines," Haltvik said. "[Handball] should be an inclusive sport, not an exclusive one."

People furiously took to Twitter disgruntled by the blatant sexism displayed:

"So that women's volleyball team got fined 1500 euros for not wanting to wear bikinis while playing their sport. Look at the men's team," one Twitter account shared generating 3.1k likes and 1.2k retweets.

"The Norwegian womens' beach volleyball team was actually fined for wearing "too long shorts". Like, can you show your sexism even more obvious?" someone replied.

"Any reason why we can't have the men in "budgie smugglers" if the women have to wear these?" another account remarked.

What do you think?