New FA guidance: children under the age of 12 should not head footballs in training
Leisure Opportunities
Job search
Job Search
see all jobs
Latest job opportunities
The Gym Group
100% of your PT earnings
Nationwide, UK
Inns of Aurora
Competitive
Ledyard, NY, USA
star job
Leicester City Council
£21,589 - £23,836
Leicester, UK
Everyone Active
Competitive hourly rate
Sutton-in-Ashfield , United Kingdom
Madame Tussauds
Competitive
New York, NY, USA

New FA guidance: children under the age of 12 should not head footballs in training

Job opportunities
Leicester City Council
£21,589 - £23,836
location: Leicester, UK
The Regis School
£33,000 to £36,000 pa (depending on experience)
location: Bognor Regis, UK
Central Foundation Girls' School
£11.50 per hour
location: Bow, London, UK
more jobs
Heading the ball is a unique aspect of the way football is played, so this needed to be given much deliberation and consideration

Children under the age of 12 should no longer head the ball during training sessions, according to The Football Association (FA).

The recommendation was made in the latest update to the FA's heading guidance, which covers all age groups between under-six and under-18.

The guidance will be introduced immediately and will also be implemented by the Irish and Scottish football associations.

It will provide grassroots clubs, coaches and players with the recommended heading guidelines for training sessions – but does not make any changes to the way matches are played.

The new guidance follows research by the University of Glasgow in 2019, which suggested that former professionals were three times more likely to die from brain disease than non-players.

The Football’s InfluencE on Lifelong health and Dementia risk (FIELD) study was based on a 22-month research project, which also discovered a five-fold increase in the risk of Alzheimer’s among ex-footballers.

"This updated heading guidance is an evolution of our current guidelines and will help coaches and teachers to reduce and remove repetitive and unnecessary heading from youth football," said FA chief executive officer Mark Bullingham.

"Our research has shown that heading is rare in youth football matches, so this guidance is a responsible development to our grassroots coaching without impacting the enjoyment that children of all ages take from playing the game."

Les Howie, head of grassroots coaching at The FA, added: "When the FIELD study was published in October 2019, it felt like an important milestone for our game.

"The FA played a crucial role in supporting the study, having joint-funded the research alongside the PFA, and since it was published we’ve not stopped thinking about exactly what the research tells us and what the best steps are to take to support the game, from grassroots level to the top.

"Naturally there were calls for heading to be banned, following the publication of the study. This was entirely understandable.

"Heading the ball is a unique aspect of the way football is played, so this needed to be given much deliberation and consideration, notably with the support of our independently-chaired FA Research Taskforce.

"However, we do need to be mindful that the FIELD study did not show that heading the ball was the cause to the link with incidence of degenerative neurocognitive disease in their sample group of ex-professional footballers who were born between 1900 and 1976. And, as a result, there was no evidence to suggest that heading the ball, at any level of the game, should be banned.

"Our analysis of heading the ball in children’s games also gives us excellent insight into whether heading is a big part of the game at that level or not. The research shows that on average there are only around two headers per game in children’s football, which shows that heading the ball is an infrequent occurrence at that level of the game.

"The attention of our FA Research Taskforce then moved to football training, where heading the ball was likely to be more frequent and where bespoke heading practice sessions could be more prominent.

"Following detailed analysis and consolation, the new and updated Heading Guidance provides support for parents, coaches and teachers. The guidance covers all aspects of how to coach heading the ball, including the correct size of ball to use, the best techniques and how often the ball should be headed. The focus is on quality of heading training, rather than quantity."

Sign up for FREE ezines & magazines
Children under the age of 12 should no longer head the ball during training sessions, according to The Football Association (FA).
SAR,PAC,PLY,RES,PUB
imagesX/THUMB344733_213502_564623.jpg

More News

1 - 15 of 42,596
27 Mar 2020
Physical activity sector bodies have welcomed the government's measures to help the UK's self-employed workers during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced yesterday ... More
27 Mar 2020
Hollywood star Chris Hemsworth is making his online fitness programme Centrfit available for free for the next six weeks. The Australian actor and fitness enthusiast ... More
27 Mar 2020
American Council on Exercise (ACE) has urged US policymakers to not leave the fitness sector's independent contractors, sole proprietors and small family businesses behind in ... More
27 Mar 2020
All of the national parks in Congo and Rwanda featuring primates have closed their doors to visitors in an effort to avoid Africa's endangered mountain ... More
27 Mar 2020
Humphrey Cobbold, CEO of Pure Gym, appeared on BBC Question Time last night (26 March 2020), along with Richard Horton, editor-in-chief of The Lancet, Emily ... More
27 Mar 2020
A new national campaign has been launched to encourage people to stay physically active at their homes during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) lockdown. The Join the ... More
EMD UK
EMD UK
27 Mar 2020
iFit, an interactive fitness streaming platform from Freemotion Fitness, has received significant capital investment, worth US$200m (£164m, €181m), from Pamplona Capital Management that will enable ... More
26 Mar 2020
Local residents and businesses have come to the aid of a zoo which said it might have to euthanise animals after panic buying disrupted its ... More
26 Mar 2020
The British Association of Leisure Parks, Piers and Attractions (BALPPA) has postponed its upcoming expo and tradeshow in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The ... More
26 Mar 2020
ClassPass will begin offering its partners the opportunity to live-stream classes through its app and website. The fitness subscription platform will make the service available ... More
26 Mar 2020
Gym operators are pivoting to digital in a stampede to engage with members during the coronavirus shutdown, with David Lloyd Leisure (DLL) being the latest ... More
26 Mar 2020
Leading organisations in the physical activity sector have urged chancellor Rishi Sunak to provide urgent financial support for the sector's 60,000 self-employed workers. The heads ... More
Alliance Leisure
Alliance Leisure
26 Mar 2020
Fitness giant Technogym will enable club operators to offer at-home training and coaching services to members remotely via its Mywellness Cloud platform. Aiming to keep ... More
26 Mar 2020
Be Military Fit with Bear Grylls (BMF) will activate its network of ex-armed forces personnel and mobilise it in the fight against the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) ... More
25 Mar 2020
Boutique fitness brand Frame has launched an 'online studio', offering a selection of virtual exercise classes for its members to take part in at home. ... More
Barnsgrove Health and Wellness Club
Barnsgrove Health and Wellness Club
1 - 15 of 42,596
The Leisure Media Company Ltd
The Leisure Media Company Ltd