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Hands off the Soccer Ball!

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Hey, Soccer Players!

Wherever you end up attending summer camp, you’re likely to find Soccer as an offered activity. Not quite as popular here in the U.S. as it is elsewhere, Soccer is actually the world’s most popular sport. And, originally, it didn’t go by ‘soccer’ either; it was called Football. How was the sport invented? How did it arrive at the name Soccer? And what do kids get out of this hands-off sport?

A slew of other sports involve throwing, catching, swinging, swatting, and all sorts of other actions that require your hands. Soccer is the one sport where the use of hands is not permitted—that’s why they called it Football. By historic record, its origin spans over 2000 years back, coming out of ancient China. There are, however, other areas that claim the sport’s invention: Greece, Rome, and Central America.

But it wasn’t until the late 1700’s that the sport arrived in England where the rules of the game were polished and refined. The British are credited with turning the game into the sport we see today with such rules as ‘No Use of Hands’ and ‘No Tripping Opponents’.

While everyone called it Football, the British found the name Soccer, or ‘Socker’, was useful to distinguish the sport from Rugby Football in an official capacity. But it wasn’t until American Football that the name Soccer really started sticking across the world by mouth (though it’s still commonly referred to as ‘Football’ outside the USA).

But a sport by any other name would still be just as sweet! And it’s a great workout too! Check out some of the awesome benefits you can earn from participating:

Cycling through a walk, a run, and a sprint, Soccer is great exercise for cardiovascular health and improves flexibility. It also develops strength and coordination. Being a part of a team and playing a sport like Soccer builds confidence too and nourishes self-esteem.

Have a great time playing Soccer this summer and, as always, thanks for reading, Camp Folks!


- John


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