Saturday 20 July 2019

Walking Football proves a big hit for the over-50s with programme now set to continue

Participants of the 2018 Walking Football initiative in Balbriggan
Participants of the 2018 Walking Football initiative in Balbriggan

Fingal County Council has completed its first Walking Football initiative in Balbriggan with another to start in the New Year.

The initiative is designed to encourage men and women over 50 of all fitness levels to keep active and enjoy playing football.

The game is played on a smaller pitch at walking pace. During this initiative, there were ten participants. The sessions involved a warm up consisting of different movements and stretches followed by approximately 40 minutes of game time.

Sports Development Officer with Fingal County Council, Ciaran Russell said: 'This is a great way for people to get back into sport and get involved in physical activity.

'Not only is it good to be active but this programme was great fun for all involved, with some healthy competition thrown in. We are hoping to roll out different programmes designed to get people over 50 moving more and staying active in the future.'

Deputy Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Grainne Maguire said: 'I am delighted to see the community in Balbriggan involved in the Walking Football initiative.

'I would like to thank the Fingal Sports Office and FAI for their engagement with Balbriggan residents to organise an initiative that benefits the community's health and wellbeing.'

FAI Development Officer Paul Keogh said: 'It was great to see the interest in the walking football programme in Balbriggan with participants attending from surrounding towns of Rush, Lusk and Skerries. It is open to all men and women over the age of 50 and we look forward to delivering the programme again in early 2019.'

Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, Paul Reid said: 'I would like to commend the Sports Office, the FAI and the participants of the Walking Football initiative.

'I am delighted that this programme provided an accessible and sociable way for the Balbriggan residents to enjoy sports.'

The programme will start again early this year and will run for four to six weeks on Wednesday mornings at 11:00 am in Flemington Community Centre. So, if you have yet to get involved in this innovative programme, then why not get down to the community centre and give it a try? Participants so far have found it an enjoyable and valuable experience and you might just feel the same way.

For more information you call Ciaran Russell (087) 961 7530 or Paul Keogh (086) 044 4435.

Fingal Independent