You’ll never walk alone - at least not down at The Grange

The players pictured at a recent Netherton United Walking Football session.
The players pictured at a recent Netherton United Walking Football session.
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If you still want to play football but the legs have gone, then never fear Walking Football is here.

If the mind’s still willing but the body isn’t, then get yourself down to The Grange at Netherton on a Wednesday and play a slower-paced version of the game.

Walking Football may still be a new sport in some quarters but Netherton United have just celebrated their second birthday and the popularity of the game down at their base at The Grange couldn’t be stronger.

On November 13, 2013, the Northamptonshire FA worked alongside Netherton UnitedFC to provide players over the age of 50 with an opportunity to participate in Walking Football.

However, still in its infancy, the sessions only attracted three players on that first training session.

Since then though increased publicity around Walking Football – emphasised by a nationwide television advert for one of the country’s prominent banks – has seen the game adopted by town and cities across the country.

Having led the way, Netherton United’s Walking Football provision now has 20-plus players involved, with the football club providing one of the region’s leading Walking Football teams.

Walking Football is a form of the game targeted specifically at players aged 50 or over, providing people with the opportunity to play football without the physical exertion required in the running game.

The rules are exactly the same, with one exception – jogging or running is considered a foul, with a free-kick subsequently awarded to the opposing team.

The growth of Netherton United’s Walking Football sessions is an example of how much the game has developed across the Northamptonshire FA’s catchment area.

Since establishing the first Walking Football sessions with Netherton United, the Northamptonshire FA now supports an impressive 14 sessions across the county every week, with sessions available every day of the working week.

Ron Seddon, chairman of Netherton Community Sports Association, said: “It’s fantastic to see how many people play now compared to two years ago.

“We are really proud to have just celebrated our two-year anniversary.

“All the players look forward to their Wednesday morning session with the new friends they have made through walking football”.

Stuart Smith, Football Development Officer at the Northamptonshire FA, added: “Netherton Walking Football was our first session and it’s great to see it continuing to grow two years on.

“I thank Ron Seddon, Steve Gould, Taff Lovesey and their helpers for all the work they do, ensuring the players get their weekly football fix.”

For more information on Walking Football across the Northamptonshire FA’s catchment area, which spans Northamptonshire and Peterborough, contact Stuart Smith via stuart.smith@northantsfa.com or call 01604 678409.

A full list of the Northamptonshire FA’s Walking Football sessions can be found at www.northamptonshirefa.com/players/walking-football