As the winter continues there is an increase in the amount of people who will hang up their football or Futsal boots during the cold and settle in to enjoy a relaxing few months of home comforts, however this is the opposite of what we should be encouraging!
January is the perfect time of year to practice your skills and enjoy those indoor sports that often get overlooked during the warm summer months. Most people have never even heard of Futsal, but lately it is becoming an increasingly popular sport and that could be down to many different fun and interesting factors.
So what is Futsal?
Futsal is an indoor game which is extremely similar to football yet does have a few important yet subtle differences! First of all it is a five a side game, including the goal keeper. Therefore due to the amount of players on the court at one time this game is less about team work and formations and more about the skill set of the individual player!
This makes a game of futsal often a very interesting watch as there are many more flicks, tricks and kicks, as opposed to a game of football. The fact that this game requires an extreme amount of skill makes it the perfect game for aspiring footballers to play over the winter! Practicing your individual ball skills will improve you as a player, and these new found skills can be transferred into your football games played over the warmer months.
Part of what makes this game rely more on ball skills is the size of the ball! It is played with a size four ball which is smaller than the traditional football. It is also harder too, making it more difficult to kick up the pitch, thus meaning there are more dribbling and ball control skills involved.
Futsal is one of those games which is suitable for everyone, especially when it comes to bringing your games inside at schools or sports centres. The game was developed to originally be played on a basketball court, and not require any specialist markings. This means that futsal can be played at a professional standard almost anywhere! Making it both fun and versatile.
Another key difference between futsal and football is the pace of play. Futsal is a much quicker game with only 20 minutes play time in either half. This quick paced game keeps players on their toes and allows no time for time wasters! Not only are there free kicks given away to those who appear to be taking too long to move with the ball, but the goal keeper is also penalised for having the ball for more than four seconds.
Futsal is one of those games that doesn’t require much specialist equipment, especially when regarding the play environment. However, as already stated futsal does use a different ball, and therefore a size four Futsal Ball is required. With the growing popularity of futsal these smaller, harder balls can be purchased from many established sports equipment suppliers.
Another piece of equipment that is needed is a Futsal Goal! These are smaller than the average football goal, and usually look quite similar to a hockey goal. These are a great purchase however as they can be used year round, no matter the weather and will ensure that players have the proper equipment to enjoy a great game.
Futsal’s ever growing popularity comes from the fact that more and more athletes are realising the benefits of keeping active year round with fun and alternative activities. And not only can futsal help to keep you fit through the winter, but the fast paced, high skill game can also help to improve your ball control. A great skill which can then be transferred into your future football endeavours! So why not have a go at playing a quick game this winter at your local sports facility and see for yourself what all the fuss is about!
BY - Will Chrimes
3 January 2018