"Walking football": what it is, how to play it and why it is the "active" future for many of us

Among the walking sports there is also football, let’s see how it works and what is the goal of the Italian Walking Football Confederation

Enrico Maria Corno

For a couple of years, on the Instagram and TikTok accounts of true sports fans, strange images of kids have been playing basketball without jumping but making a thousand feints and very fast turns. There are also those who play American football this way. They are the so-called “walking sport”whose practice adapts the rules of the traditional version by forcing athletes not to run, always keeping at least one foot on the ground exactly as you do when walking.

The categories of football walked

“Obviously, the so-called walking football is the most practiced sport in this area, now also in Italy”, he tells us Vito Gibinone of the top executives of the Italian Walking Football Confederation opened only a few months ago. “Yes, of course, it’s a question of fun, willingness to get together and obviously it’s good for health but we like the idea that this is a real sport where competition plays a fundamental part. We have four categories: the female Over 40, those for the 50 year olds, the 60 year olds and the Over 60 year olds. In the Italian Cup finals an 81 year old and an 83 year old also played but if a forty year old shows up at our door we certainly won’t send him away. In general, however, he still has the age and the desire to play five-a-side football “.

Imitating the British

The federal government’s long-term goal is get to the British levels where Premier League teams they all have at least one football team walked whose members are often former high-profile players who are the driving force for the movement and whose federation has over 100,000 members and 1,500 teams: “The pool we could draw on has the same numbers, adding the former football players from Serie A to the third category ”, continues Vito Gibin. “Today we have 330 members, including two former Italian Champions such as Domenico Volpati ex Verona and Domenico Marocchino, formerly of Juventus. And we begin to be present at the first international tournamentstrying to make a good impression: after all, the Italian Curling team won Olympic gold with 330 members of the federation “.

Walk soccer: how to play

It is played on reduced fields, maximum 40×25 meters, with five skaters and the goalkeeper. “The goal in the short term, on the other hand, is to be recognized by CONI: the rules are clear and we must grow up to have at least 1,000 members and 50 companies in two years. We hope to make it, despite the fact that we have lost a few months due to the pandemic ”. In addition to prohibition to run forward on which the referees are uncompromising (more easily they let the lateral movements run if no one takes advantage of it), in this sport there is also the no contact, which makes walking football extremely safe at all ages: “During the last International Tournament in Bilbao the local university monitored us and took blood tests before, during and after the matches to scientifically prove that this sport is good for health. Now we look forward to the results ”. To begin, just go to the site and find the contacts: www.confederazionecalciocamminato.it

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