Walking Football Comes To Lancashire
Written by Matt Constantine on 06/04/2021
Walking football is one of the fastest growing sports in the UK. Garstang FC now have their own team.
David Graham, the Liaison Officer for Garstang Walking Football Team told us: “I joined a walking football club a few years ago, initially just for a kick about and quite enjoyed it.
When the COVID pandemic came about, a lad called Phil Moor who had stayed on at the original club asked if Garstang would be interested in starting a walking football team.
A couple of weeks before Christmas we had a few games that were well attended.
If people are in their 40s that are either coming back from an injury or just wanting exercise then they can come along, walking football is great physical and mental exercise, I’d say to anyone around Garstang to come along and give it a go.”
Garstang Walking Football Club re-started on Monday 29th March. Following the taster sessions there are now over 30 players who have registered an interest in playing.
I asked Mike Wilson (a new member) how he had heard about the club. “I found the club’s YouTube video first and then the Garstang FC website, I then watched a couple of walking football YouTube videos. I joined the club to make new friends and to get fit.”
The games are usually 40 minutes long, there is no running or jogging as the name suggests and only low impact tackling.
Walking football was invented in 2011 by the Chesterfield FC Community Trust program and was originally set up to improve the health of older people in the area. In 2014 however, was when the sport emerged to a wider range of people.
The sport is played internationally. At 72 years of age, Tom Charlton (younger brother of Bobby Charlton) represented England in Brighton’s Amex Stadium in the first ever international walking football tournament. They won the match against Italy 3-0.
Walking football is aimed at people over 50, If you are looking for a new sport to regain confidence and improve your mental and physical health, this could be the sport for you. If you want to read more about the Garstang group, follow this link: http://garstangfc.co.uk/teams/Walking-Football. For clubs in your area refer to the WFA (Walking Football Association)