Hosted at the Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre, the city’s first walking football tournament for over 50s attracted more than 70 players.
IT might lack the fast pace of indoor soccer but 'walking football' might be the way to satisfy a competitive itch for people seeking a low-impact, non-contact alternative to traditional sports.
Played on smaller pitches with shorter game times, the Walking Rule is defined as 'always having one foot on the ground', and City of Canterbury Bankstown Mayor Khal Asfour says the game is very similar to six-a-side or futsal, however there is a focus on passing the ball rather than speed and running.
"Some other key rules include players concede a free kick if they run; slide tackles are banned; the ball can't be kicked above hip height; and there are no goalkeepers," he said.
The council teamed up with the Bankstown District Amateur Football Association (BDAFA) and Canterbury and Districts Football Association (CDSFA) to host the city's first walking football tournament for over 50s at the Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre in Riverwood on December 4.
Attracting more than 70 players, BDAFA general manager Shane Merry said the oldest person on the court was 90.
He said based on the event's success, a new weekly competition is set to start in the second week of February next year.
"People won't need to organise a team, they can just show up on the night and play," Mr Berry said.
"This provides another sector of the community the chance to play football and it's particularly important as it gives the ageing population the chance to stay fit and healthy."
Offering both male and female players a chance to continue playing or to take part in football for the first time, Football NSW member services manager, Matt Rippon, says interest in the program is growing day by day.
For more information on playing in 2018 or joining a team, call 9771 3322 or email Shane Merry at firstname.lastname@example.org.