How Football Can Keep You Fit Whilst Having Fun
by Ankit Nagar
September 2, 2019
Ever since I was in the 11-years old Iâ€™ve been kicking a football around for fun with my friends and have been experiencing the best time ever. I had started out playing football for fun, I was more inclined towards cricket, skating and tennis at the time. However, with time, my love for the game grew and I took it upon myself to play professionally. Soon I was training with esteemed clubs from my city and establishing a name for myself in the cityâ€™s football circuit. I even went on to represent my country, India at theÂ Deutsches Football Internat in Germany. From being a skinny, lanky and underconfident kid to becoming a fit, strong and confident 21-year old individual, football has helped me grow holistically.
I would have always remained weak and underconfident had I not found football. I would never have understood the true meaning of teamwork, the true meaning of keeping fit. I wouldnâ€™t have recognized how much fun just kicking a ball around and running behind it actually could be, I wouldnâ€™t have met so many new people and I would never have been this open to new experiences had it not been for this sport.
There used to be a time when I could sledgehammer a football with my left foot over 50 yards, but now, itâ€™s sad to say but I genuinely cannot. Out of the 10 years that Iâ€™ve been playing football, the last 5 have been coping and dealing with an injury that has now led to a ligament rupture. Due to which I have just undergone surgery and am now back in the race to get back to playing.
There was a time when people would tell me that Iâ€™m too short, skinny and weak to play football competitively which used to break me down internally. Iâ€™ve faced criticism from every possible direction for my physique. And through all that, I have pushed and have made it to where I am. Why? Because I wanted to. Plain and simple.
And that is the biggest point that I am trying to convey, if you have a goal in mind, football can help you achieve it. Just due to the nature of the game.
How Football Helps You Become Fit
Football is a game that is a nonstop running, sprinting and jogging fest. At one point youâ€™ll be running to score a goal, another to support your teammate and another sprinting back to save and not concede a goal. Right there itself is one of the biggest advantages of playing football, it increases your aerobic capacity immensely and also induces a significant improvement in oneâ€™s cardiovascular health. Playing a game like football guarantees that you will be keeping your heart rate up and that you will be engaged at all times because you will have company in your teammates and a greater goal than just your own benefit, that is helping the team win.
Research from all over the world points out that playing football is able to significantly reduce an individuals cholesterol level more than running or lifting weights does. Football is able to improve your muscle tone and helps a lot in reducing body fat. Since one has to be alert throughout a game, it improves your coordination as well as your cognitive brain function.
Football is a sport that is able to offer you a holistic way of getting fit. All you need is will-power, a set of friends/ a team and a football.
How Can You Make This Work For Yourself
Football is the type of sport that can be played for fun as well as a competition. Both encourage players to put in their efforts to produce a desirable outcome because honestly, nobody likes to lose. There are various ways to get involved in football.
- For starters, you can look around your locality if other people play. If you do find people, itâ€™ll be best if you can ask to join them. Another option is to gather your own group of friends, find a spot that is convenient to play and have a kick-about there. Everyone can decide beforehand itself regarding the nature of the game, that is, will it be a friendly game or is there something at stake, which often determines the intensity at which the football is played. But at the end of the day, a game football is always a lot of fun.
- Another way is to google search for football academies around you that are enrolling students. You can get in touch with them and join in case you are not on budget restrictions. However, in case you are. And you do not find people playing around you, and you do not have friends who play football even. Football offers you a way out.
- And this next avenue is to do personal training, something that I personally do myself. I feel this is a way to really improve yourself and cross boundaries you never have before. For beginners, personal training might seem like a lot, but in todayâ€™s world, one can always find a way to get something done. To get into personal training, you should follow this football player cum coach named Michael Cunningham. From England, this guy has been posting videos on fun ways on how to train by yourself with just a football and a few cones for over the past three years. I have been following him and learning how to become fitter, faster and a better player in general. You can follow his page on YouTube called 7mlc where you can choose what specific training you are looking for each day.
Just like any other aspect of life, you need to have the patience for football as well. Nothing is going to happen overnight, but if you keep at it and enjoy yourself while doing so for at least a month, you are going to see changes that will encourage you to never quit and surpass any limitations or boundaries you have ever set for yourself.
Everything is a process, so is this. Trust that it will make you better, and have loads of fun while doing so.