What is a Disposal in Australian Football?

A Brief Introduction to Australian Football

Australian football, also known as Aussie Rules or footy, is a popular sport played predominantly in Australia. It is a unique and fast-paced game that combines elements of soccer, rugby, and Gaelic football. In Australian football, the objective is to score goals by kicking the ball through the middle two goalposts at each end of the oval-shaped field.

Understanding Disposal in Australian Football

In the context of Australian football, a disposal refers to any act where a player legally disposes of (i.e., kicks or handballs) the ball during gameplay. It is an essential aspect of the game and influences team strategy and individual player performance.

The Different Types of Disposals

There are two primary types of disposals in Australian football: kicks and handballs. Let’s explore each:


A kick involves striking the ball with one’s foot to propel it towards teammates or towards scoring areas on the field. Kicking allows players to cover greater distances with more accuracy than handballing. Skilled players can execute various types of kicks such as drop punts, torpedo punts, snap kicks, and banana kicks.


Handballing refers to using an open hand clenched fist motion to pass/distribute the ball instead of kicking it. Handballs are often used when players are under pressure from opponents but still need to move quickly with possession intact. This technique helps maintain fast-paced gameplay while ensuring accurate delivery between teammates.

The Importance of Effective Disposal

Effective disposal plays a crucial role in maximizing team performance on-field:

Possession Retention:

Maintaining possession is vital for teams aiming for sustained attacking opportunities. Accurate disposals are essential to ensure the ball reaches teammates successfully, minimizing turnovers and allowing for continued control of play.

Creating Scoring Opportunities:

Strategic disposal is key to creating scoring chances. By delivering precise kicks or handballs, players can set up their teammates in optimal positions to score goals. This requires good decision-making, awareness of the game’s dynamics, and skillful execution.

Gaining Territory:

Disposal techniques help teams gain territory on the field. Kicking long distances allows players to advance towards their attacking end quickly or clear the ball away from their defensive areas when under pressure. Handballing can be employed in tight situations where precision short-range passes are required.

The Role of Disposal Efficiency

Disposal efficiency refers to a player’s ability to make effective disposals during a match. A high disposal efficiency percentage indicates that a player consistently delivers accurate kicks or handballs throughout a game, positively impacting their team’s overall performance.

Improving Disposal Skills

Becoming proficient at disposing of the ball requires practice and understanding various techniques:

Developing Kicking Skills:

Players should focus on mastering different types of kicks by practicing regularly with both feet. Working on accuracy, distance, and adaptability helps enhance overall kicking abilities.

Honing Handball Techniques:

Handball skills can be improved through repetitive training exercises focusing on timing and coordination between players. Developing quick decision-making capabilities under pressure contributes significantly to successful handball execution during matches.

In Conclusion

Australian football heavily relies on effective disposal techniques such as kicking and handballing for gameplay progression, possession retention, creating scoring opportunities, and gaining territory. Players who consistently demonstrate high disposal efficiency contribute significantly towards their team’s success in this fast-paced sport.