Mission Statement

To promote and develop the sport of Transplant Football and the development of persons interested in the sport primarily across England, but not excluding Wales.

ETFA will provide any person who has received an organ donation, Stem-Cell or Bone Marrow transplant the opportunity to access Transplant Football at a grassroots, club and national level.

To maintain the organisation’s non-profit status and provide funds to allow the above operations to function where required.


Walking Football Association Partnership

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walking football association

Walking Football Association Partnership

Walking Football Association Partnership

England Transplant Football Association is excited to announce our new partnership with the Walking Football Association. The partnership forms part of our grassroots pathway to provide more opportunities for transplant recipients 40+ to get involved in football.

The WFA has access to over 460 clubs nationally and runs the England national team for women over 40’s and Men’s 50+ teams. As the recognised governing body, the WFA’s core principles align with what we are trying to achieve at the ETFA. To create more opportunities to get more transplant recipients involved in playing, coaching or refereeing football. So one day, they may be able to play or coach for their country.

ETFA Founder, Stevie Woodrow, commented:

Our focus as a Transplant Football Association is to grow a pathway for transplant recipients over 40 to continue to get involved in sport. That is why the partnership with the WFA is a perfect fit so that we can link players with clubs nationally. As well as educate through our U-try hubs regionally, with the Walking Football Association being a key partner ``

Who are the WFA? 

The Walking Football Association launched in December 2016 as the only National Governing Body (NGB) for walking football. 

Initially, the game was invented in 2012 by John Croot, the Chief Exec of Chesterfield FC. Aiming to meet the needs of the older community in Chesterfield, get back involved in sport. 

Over the years, walking football has grown regionally at the grassroots level through regional FAs and tournaments. Which was a good thing, but the game became fragmented. As different organisations had their own rules of the game.

A group of active and passionate volunteers came together to form the WFA as a non-profit organisation. To make the walking football game more structured with clear objectives to grow the game.

Aims and Purposes of the WFA

  • To promote and facilitate the playing of Walking Football as a unique amateur sport in all parts of the United Kingdom. For recreation, physical exercise and competition.
  • Raise the profile of Walking Football throughout the UK.
  • Promote participation in the sport. Inspiring activity, seeking to have an impact on physical and mental wellbeing.
  • Key priorities include the eradication of running and physical contact and the establishment of specialist WFA referees.

Why Get Involved?

So, walking football is aimed at the over 50s and is fully inclusive for all genders. According to the WFA, over 60,000 players around England are taking part in the sport. The majority of which are playing for “fun, friendship and fitness”, socially and competitively. People suffering from long term health conditions have found walking football to aid in recovery and help with mental health. 

Currently, various initiatives promote the game, with the WFA being at the forefront. These being:- 

  • We are Undefeatable Campaigns
  • People with Parkinson’s
  • Recovering from a stroke
  • Dementia

See Highlights of the Sport Parkinson’s Walking Football Tournament – March 2022

Milestones for the Walking Football Association 

The WFA has continuously promoted inclusion and diversity since forming in 2016. They have been nominated and recognised by the Sports Business Awards twice as finalists, winning a bronze award. Including:- 

  •  Now trained over 300 referees
  • Written a ‘Toolkit’ for new clubs
  • published a ‘Guide to Walking Football’ for new players 
  • Run the National Cup for Walking Football Clubs for several years
  • Set up the first Women’s National Cups in 2021
  • Organised the Super League – for regional teams
  • Developed the sport internationally 
  • Founder members of FIWFA, the sports international governing body

Highlights of England Women Over 40’s and the England Women Over 50’s. –  August 2021

We will be hosting U-try Hubs for male and female transplant recipients who want to give it a go. If you can’t find a club locally, get in touch with our development team, and we can help you start your journey.

Email:- walkingfootball@transplantfootball.com 

Natter Podcast - S1 Episode 3

Listen to our latest Natter podcast featuring Over 6o’s Manager Stuart Langworthy from the England Walking Football Club.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I play waking football if I have had a transplant?

You can play walking football if you have received an organ transplant and your consultant is happy for you to do so. It can help with fitness and recovery after transplantation in a safe environment as the game is a non-contact sport.

Can women play walking football?

Yes, walking football is fully inclusive for all genders and abilities. The WFA promotes the women’s game for those 40+, including an England women’s team.

How old do you have to be to play walking football?

The recognised age to play men’s walking football is 50+, although the women’s game starts at 40+.

Can I play walking football if aged under 50?

You cannot play walking football for a recognised club or in a league if you are under 50 years old. Although the game is a fully inclusive sport, some organisations offer to participate socially. The rules may not be as strict, and the sessions may be more relaxed on who can participate.

Can walking football help with weight loss?

Walking football can help lose weight if played regularly, just like any other sport. It also helps with recovery from long term illness and community integration which can help with mental health.
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