CRICKETERS can carry on playing at a good standard until their 40s – just ask Stuart Broad...
Bowls players are at their peak well into their autumn years.
But footballers? Well, by their mid-30s their team-mates are looking at them, shaking their heads, and saying the legs and the ‘engine’ aren’t what they were...
But now those days are done. Players in their 30s right up to their 70s can now carry on strutting their stuff on the pitch – thanks to walking football.
The sport is just starting to make a real impact on the sporting scene – and Farnham Town are keen to give players the opportunity to take part.
Commercial manager Ed Kelsing said: “We have men’s football, a thriving youth set-up, we are working to make women’s football bigger and better – and now we want to get involved with walking football.
“We want to be a club who deliver football for all.
“Waverley Borough Council tried to get a team up and running – so to speak – but the training sessions were indoors and took place in the middle of the day.
“A lot of people who want to take part in walking football are still busy working, and would never to able to join in at that time.
“So we want to start a proper walking football club, using the 3G pitch at Weydon School, having proper qualified coaches running it, training during Thursday evenings and having as many teams as there is a demand for.
“If we get a really good take-up, I could see us putting out several teams, perhaps with different age groups, playing competitive matches, catering for players up to 70 or 75.
“Just because players get older doesn’t mean they want to stop playing, or stop being competitive.
“Since we announced our plans on social media, we have had about 17 or 18 people come forward who are interested. But we think there are probably a lot more than that.
“The sport is really growing in the UK. Just because players don’t throw themselves into tackles like they did when they were younger doesn’t make it any less enjoyable – well, not for most players!
“It may be walking, but it can still be played at quite a fast pace – the mind still has to react to things quickly – and sometimes it’s hard to keep to that fine line between walking fast and breaking into a run.
“It’s about seeing people carrying on playing, enjoying the game, enjoying being part of a team again and part of a club – and also about keeping people active.
“We want people aged 35 and over to get in touch and we will organise the sessions – the first session will be free, to let everyone see what the sport is about. We also want to recruit another qualified coach.”