Wabol, the soccer where running is forbidden

Wabol, the soccer where running is forbidden
Image courtesy of wabol.es, all rights reserved.

If you are hearing this term so far, the first thing you should know is that yes, you read that right, in this sport it is strictly forbidden to run. Wabol was designed to help people lead an active lifestyle, regardless of age and fitness level.

But another interesting thing we want to tell you is that wabol was invented, or rather adapted, by two Barça veterans, Archibald and Silvio. In an interview, they both commented that one day they thought they wanted to do “soccer for old people”, so they began to do some research and found that something similar, walking football, was already being played in England.

So in 2017 they opened a club on the Costa del Sol and currently there is already an international federation. The only difference is that both decided to create their own rules that, according to them, “are adapted to Catalonia, to the player here. The way Barça plays: that is, tiki-taka”.

Are you interested in practicing wabol? we tell you all about it!

At the Teixonera fields, in Vall d’Hebron, wabol is played every Monday and Thursday. According to Silvio, it will soon also be possible to play on Sundays. In addition, women’s teams are also starting to be formed with people over 30 years of age.

Currently, the club has more than 90 registered members, i.e. people who play walking soccer. It is worth mentioning that they have already played an exhibition match in France. And as if that were not enough, they have already played in two leagues, which suggests that this sport has a great future ahead of it.

Regarding its founders, we must highlight that Steve Archibald acts as referee, and has the reputation of being one of the best Scottish players in history. He is a former Barça striker and is remembered for his famous goal with his ear in the match played in Turin against Juventus.

For his part, Silvio, who has a much longer name: Andrew Silvio Sims Simatoc Szegedi Stólarcsic. He is the son of Nicolae Szegedi, originally from Romania, who also played for Barça of the 5 cups.

According to Silvio, there are four basic rules in wabol:

  1. It is forbidden to run
  2. The ball can only be touched three times.
  3. The ball cannot be lifted more than two meters.
  4. And the one that, according to one of its founders, is the most important, “it is forbidden to get angry here”.

A sport for everyone with many benefits

Believe it or not, it offers not only health benefits, but also great social advantages. Participants avoid having to be isolated. In terms of health, it is worth noting that since it is an organized sport, players feel committed to participate, given that neither physical condition nor technical capabilities matter.

Through the Wabol federation website, they report that in one hour of play an average of 6.71 km is covered, 10,165 steps are taken and 362.2 kcal are burned.