It was a warm and sunny April afternoon when these pioneers of walking soccer and their faithful fans took to field at Laurel Farms in Sherborn, Massachusetts. This inaugural pick-up walking soccer match was organized by OTHSL board member, Steve Siniscalchi.
What is walking soccer?
Walking soccer is a fun way to get low impact exercise while experiencing the comradery of team soccer. There is no contact between players and one foot must remain on the ground at all times. Soccer experience is helpful to play, but not necessary.
Walking soccer is a game that anyone can play, regardless of experience, age, gender, or physical conditioning. Players still experience all their favorite parts of soccer: Being outside and taking to a fresh cut grass field, the connection of a perfect pass amongst teammates, and the satisfaction of solid finish along with the smiles and high fives when that ball hits the net. It is the joy of the game and cardiovascular fitness while producing less stress on the body than tradition soccer.
This first match of walking soccer was a positive experience for all... players demonstrated great footwork, defense, communication, teamwork, and passing. It was a bit of adjustment for most to try not to run or hop, but as the game went on the players adjusted to the new rules and seemed to get much enjoyment out of the challenge of learning this new version the game.
Walking soccer seemed to integrate a chess mentality; to be successful on the pitch, players found they had to think one step ahead. A great example of this, is the first ever walking soccer goal, scored by Mal Blier and assisted by Chrissy Dineen as shown here: Walking Soccer GOAL!
Another conclusion noticed by game organizer, Steve Siniscalchi was that even though players were walking, everyone got their fitness level up:
"My own conclusion is that is was not as easy as it looked in videos, it was still a workout. Someone said to me as we walked off at halftime,'Boy it is a good thing we are not running, I am tired just from walking.' Amen. "
Steve would like to thank all the players who came out to pioneer this event, the town of Sherborn for usage of the field, John Utter, who donated is time to teach the rules of the game and referee the match, and all those who have offered to help expand the walking soccer playing opportunities.
Mass Soccer would like to thank Steve for organizing and giving our soccer community something new to try.
To get more information on walking soccer, please email Steve.
Next walking soccer pick up: April 28th at 1pm: Laurel Farms Athletic Field, Sherborn MA