Whether an organised match, playing recreationally or keeping fit through programmes like Soccercise, football is a game of teamwork, individual skill and a great way of having fun and keeping fit with friends.

Why is it good for me?

Football is an aerobic sport which can help to improve your heart and lung function, as well as increasing your energy and stamina. Jogging around the park or pitch can also help reduce tension, anxiety and depression.

There are loads of ways you can get involved in the sport, from Soccercise, which incorporates football with fitness right through to competing in The FA People’s Cup.

How much does it cost?

A kickabout in the park is absolutely free!

A commercial provider will charge around £6 a session. Clubs can range from free to £5 a session.

What equipment do I need?

Comfy clothes and trainers are all you need. Oh, and jumpers to use as goal posts, of course!

Teams may require a team kit and football boots, but your coach will be able to advise you on this.

Read Ruth’s story to find out how playing football helped her manage her mental health.

During a summer which saw the Women’s World Cup reach a record 17 million viewers in the UK, The Spirit of The Game short film captures this pivotal moment in women’s football. This spoken-word film gives voice to young, female players in 2019; exploring what football means to them, whilst encouraging others throughout the country to take up the sport.

A low music track hums in the background.

A Girl with a red number 47 football t-shirt stands on balcony.

A different girl wearing a green football t-shirt brushes her teeth, watching herself in the mirror.

Another teenage girl packs her football shoes into her bag in her bedroom. She heads out of the door of her flat.

Speaker: They say there are two million fewer women playing regular sport than men. Well, that’s 2 million women I am here to represent.

The girl heads towards an outside football court where other girls are already playing football.

Speaker: They say I can’t play football because I’m a girl, but let’s flip it, let’s mix it, those stereotypes don’t fit.

Various girls embrace and greet each other before starting to play football on the pitch.

Speaker: The boots in my bag have kicked open a new door. There’s inspiration in my hand and my girls are my band.

A group of girls cheer the girls playing on.

Speaker: Football is family. Football is escaping. Football is laughter, freedom, dance and song.

The girl are now on the bus, they chat and laugh together.

Speaker: Now breathe, count one, two, three.

The girls all wear yellow kits and huddle together.

Speaker: I feel sick, but I’m ready to make the hair on their backs rise like the Sun.

The girls dance and laugh on an AstroTurf pitch.

Speaker: The pitch feels like home at the end of a long day, the kit, the crowd, my studs in the grass, the sweat on my back.

One of the girls stops to take a breath, before running back into the game.

Speaker: I am a striker, I spark like a match. I am a defender, thunder and lightning, ready to smite.

The camera shows each individual girl as they stand in line.

Speaker: I am a midfielder watching the ball like a hawk. I’ve got the mindset of a queen securing a dream. After the game I am liberated, an eagle soaring in the sky.

A girl on the yellow team scores and the rest of her teammates begin celebrating. All of the girls sit on the floor talking after the match, they laugh and have fun.

Speaker: This girl can push through the stereotypes, push through religion, her gender, her race, her voice will be heard on and off the pitch. This girl can hop, skip, jump. She runs with her pride.

The yellow and black teams both pose together for a team picture.

There’s a book about my journey, it will show you how I’ll rise.