HLA – INCLUSIVE FOOTBALL
- Brief description
- Context and needs
- Activities and rules
- Location, environment and equipment
- Side Activities
Inclusive football is a sport activity dedicated to children with and without disabilities under age 13 that ensures equal access to enjoyment through the most famous mainstream sport. Unlike classic football, inclusive football is manifested in a friendly environment with a unique set of rules that allows everyone to express their full potential and at the same time create an environment based on fun and joy. Activity can be implemented on various football fields as it doesn’t require additional props nor equipment. Peculiarities of the activity are manifested in the ratio of the number of players of persons with and without disabilities, fun side activities in form of football polygons addressed to all participants that can also include parents. Depending on the number of participants, it can be carried out in a form of a single match or tournament, however activity emphasises on participation and togetherness, not on competition.
Inclusive football puts all participants in a position to express their full potential. Since the football teams are consisted of both children with and without disabilities, the benefits are manifold:
- Children with disabilities have equal access and with help of children without disabilities can easily perform basic elements of a football game;
- Children without disabilities gain a sense of awareness of the needs of children with disabilities and are able to help them in achieving their potential;
- Both children with and without disabilities experience growth of technical-motorial-emotional-cognitive skills within their capabilities;
The basic concept would include a football match between 2 teams that are consisted of both children with and without disabilities. Each team includes a coach, 6 players and a goalkeeper (6+1) in which each team needs to have minimum 3 players children with disabilities. If the team has more than 7 players, other players are considered substitutions. Children with disabilities can’t be goalkeepers.
There are no limits to the number of substitutions per team and substituted player is permitted to return to play later in the match by replacing another player. During substitutions in every moment number of children with disabilities must remain the same (3).
The match would be played 2x15min with a 5-minute half time break on a football field of smaller dimensions (futsal field approximately 40mx20m).
In case of multiple teams (3 or more), standard tournament principles can be applied. Depending on the number of teams, single match duration can be shortened to 2x10min. Number of players and field dimensions remain the same.
Inclusive football is played on the football field of smaller dimensions (futsal field approximately 40mx20m) with a regular football ball.
Location: Outdoor football field, indoor/outdoor futsal field.
Environment: It is recommended to place the activity on a football field of professional football clubs as they have a great infrastructure. They also have a very large marketing reach and a large number of followers which is an excellent way to promote inclusive activities. Also, environment that includes famous football fields has a very positive effect on participants because they feel part of a larger organization such as a professional sports club.
Equipment: football balls, cones
Peculiarities of the activity are in adaptive rules created to ensure equal access and participation.
By limiting numbers of children without disabilities in a team it becomes clear that teamwork with children with disabilities is needed in order to play. Rules encourage mutual cooperation and communication of players.
With the match duration and football fields dimensions, growth of technical-motorial-emotional-cognitive skills of the athletes and the group is meet. Benefit of the activity is that substitutions are unlimited so each player can play the duration according to his abilities (longer or shorter duration of the match).
From the other side, coaches need to motivate children without disabilities to include children with disabilities in play as much as possible. Also, by substituting players coaches can provide instructions and communicate with them while they are not playing.
In a break between football matches or at the halftime break, a football polygon course activity can be carried out. For the activity mixed teams are needed. Participants can be children with and without disabilities but also family members. Team should consist of 3 participants (children with and without disabilities, parents).
Football polygon is formed as a simple course in which participants need to dribble the ball. From the start point players need to dribble the ball for 20m and turn around a cone, and then dribble back to the start where the second player from the team receives the ball and needs to do the same. The difference in passing through the polygon is that children without disabilities and parents must dribble the ball with their weaker foot, while children with disabilities can dribble with stronger foot.
Even though the goal is to finish the polygon course as fast as possible, the emphasis of side activity is on participation and togetherness, not on competition with focus on promoting equal access, socialization and health.
Non disabled children under age 13 – 4 players per team
Disabled children under age 13 – min 3 players per team
Football coaches and associates from sports organizations – 1 coach per team
Experts and associates working with children with disabilities
Parents – 1 per team for side activity
By participating in this activity where children without disabilities and children without disabilities play at the same time, participants make new friendships and spend time together in an environment based on fun. Since they play as a heterogeneous team in which they have to work and play together, it enhances their abilities and potentials. Also, team ratio between non-disabled and disabled children through adaptive rule allows equal access during football matches.
Furthermore, coaching mixed team contributes to Education/Knowledge of coaches and others about sports for able-bodied and for people with impairment.
Finally, it is of great value to include parents through side activities to fulfil the sense of belonging.
PlayInc Key Aspects
Inclusive football as an inclusive game where children with and without disabilities play football together at the same time, puts everyone a position to express their full potential and also enhances growth of technical-motorial-emotional-cognitive skills of the athletes and the group.
For coaches is an excellent way to extend and gain knowledge about sports for able-bodied and for people with impairment by coaching a mixed team of children with and without disabilities.
With adaptive rules and limitations for non-disabled children, not only it becomes accessible to all but also each participant gets involved in a particular way and contributes to reaching activity objectives.
Contact the organisation
Name: Health Life Academy Association (HLA)