In many ways walking football is similar to regular football but the biggest difference is that in walking football you are not allowed to jog or run.
You may, of course, walk as fast as you like as long as long as one foot is in contact with the ground at tall times. Tackling is only allowed if there is no contact, all free kicks are indirect and the ball must never go above head height.
Walking football is played on small pitches, indoors, on artificial grass pitches or on natural grass. The game uses small goals and, typically, is played by six-a-side teams.
Originally designed to be played by men over the age of 50 and women over the age of 40, walking football can be played by any age group. Many people in the 70s and 80s play regularly and, in some areas, three generations of one family play on the same team.
Mixed age teams can play in friendlies or regular club matches but the competitive matches have a strict age policy and you’ll only be competing with people of the same sex and same age – for example, men of 50-59, men of 60-69 and men aged 70+. Competitive games for women include the 40-49 category, the 50-59 category and the over 60 category.
Yes there are clubs all over the country. Club walking football gives you the opportunity to play football regularly, exercise, to meet new people, be part of a football community and to have fun. It also offers competitive opportunities for those who like to compete – to play in leagues and tournaments in the county so you can experience the joy of winning.
No. You can play anywhere with friends or family – you will need a ball, a small set of goalposts, suitable clothing and a team of people. Pick you own team or organise a group yourself. Across the country, men and women of all ages and abilities are enjoying walking football, finding it a safe way to exercise and an enjoyable way to socialise.
Just as there’s a Football Association, there’s also a Walking Football Association (WFA) with a clearly defined set of rules. The WFA was launched in December 2016 with the aim of inspiring safe and social activity, increasing participation in the game and the reduction of the over-physicality in football. The WFA is run by dedicated and committed players and is registered as a not-for-profit company.
Speak to the WFA. The WFA have great expertise in this area. Stuart Langworthy ran The We Are Undefeatable Virtual Walking Football Team and is now involved in setting up Walking Football for Parkinson’s. Paul Murtagh is Chairman of Birmingham Walking Football Club and they run many sessions during the week for players with various impairments. They are building a team of volunteers such as Paul Nicholls who was part of WAU team and is now WFA physio. He has Parkinson’s and is leading in this area. Steve White from Birmingham is leading in the Central area.
The WFA is working in partnership with The England Transplant Football Club to provide all organ transplant, stem cell or bone marrow recipients with the chance to play transport football locally, nationally or internationally.
One of the WFA’s priorities is to create a team of trained, accredited referees. By 2020, more than 250 referees had been trained and training courses run monthly if you’re interested in refereeing the game.
There are plenty of clubs all over the country and abroad and we list just a few below. If you want to find your nearest club, please visit https://thewfa.co.uk/club-directory. Many of these clubs are based within a few miles of our current and forthcoming developments, meaning if you're looking to move to a new area, you could make some new friends by joining your new local team.
Please note... these contact details are liable to change and are not frequently updated. Please find the individual club's website for the most up-to-date information.
4 December 2023
Keeping the children entertained during school holidays can sometimes be a problem, but the Christmas period can be even more of…Read more
13 November 2023
What age can I retire? This is a frequently asked question but one which isn’t easy to answer. It all depends on who is asking…Read more
6 November 2023
From traditional inns to Michelin-starred restaurants, the Cotswolds has so much to offer for anyone dining out. This is an area…Read more