Walking Football – The Rapidly Growing Side Of The Beautiful Game
Walking football is becoming the rapidly growing side of the beautiful game. Like women’s football, which has grown from 7,000 players in 1990 to 147,000 playing in affiliated leagues and cup competitions to date, walking football is now growing phenomenally nationwide.
The birth of walking football happened in 2011 and the latest count shows that there are 435 registered walking football teams in the UK. This figure is set to explode as more men in their later years are rediscovering their youthful enthusiasm for the game. Originally devised for men over 50 years of age, walking football is a sport now played by many men in their 60’s and 70’s.
Apart from the health benefits walking football brings many social benefits such as friendship, camaraderie and a sense of fun to many men who without it rarely venture outdoors. Having said that, although many men play walking football for the fun element, many more play for the competitive element as they did in their younger days.
There are older men with arthritis, knee, hip and even heart replacements playing walking football and enjoying every minute of it, so health problems are no barrier to this slower paced version of the beautiful game.
A recent article in the Mail Online is well worth a read. In it current and ex professional footballers Harry Kane, Alan Shearer, Sir Geoff Hurst and Fabrice Muamba experience walking football for themselves in a bid to help make walking football a nationwide sport. A similar article in The Telegraph also mentions the possibility of a walking football world cup in future years.
In our own area of the country, Cheshire, which encompasses parts of Greater Manchester and the Wirral, we are probably one of the fastest growing areas in the country in the growth of walking football. If you have a team and would like to join the Cheshire Walking Football group then use the Contact Us page on this website.