FFA have launched their ambitious new program to increase football engagement and get Aussies into healthier habits...but it's not aimed at the usual demographic.
Sick of grandpa's tales of how quick he was back in the day? Ever told a lazy mate at training that your granny could kick harder than he can?
Well FFA are hoping to put these claims and the durability of your elder's knees to the test in their new program, 'Walking Football' - yes, you read right - aimed at getting older Australians away from A Current Affair and onto their nearest football pitch.
The $1.8m program, launched in partnership with Sport Australia and Active Ageing Australia, is promising to deliver one million hours of sport from over 6,000 players over two years, by developing a unique brand of football to suit those with a little less mobility.
The sport is planned to be rolled out across 148 'walking football clubs' (no, not the Mariners) and the rules are thus:
- Running is not allowed. A participant always has to have one foot on the ground.
- It is a non-contact version of the game.
- The ball cannot be kicked above head height.
- There is no heading of the ball.
- There are no ‘referees’ as such and the competitive angle is kept to a minimum.
- The focus is on fun and making friends.
“The time, location, venues and numbers on each team can be adapted depending on the needs of participants in each area,” outgoing FFA CEO, David Gallop said.
“We also want to make this program affordable to encourage as many older Australians as possible to participate. It’s all about getting active, having fun and making new friends.
“In the United Kingdom there more than 800 Walking Football clubs and we’re optimistic Australians will love this modified version of the World Game too."