Most Shared

There's a new sport for kids with mobility issues, and it's awesome.

Think kids with disabilities aren’t cut out for soccer? Think again.

There's a new sport for kids with mobility issues, and it's awesome.
True
Toyota

Remember the days of grass-stained shorts? Mud-caked cleats? Hours spent running around like a maniac while adults cheered?

Nothing says childhood like Saturdays on the soccer field. But for kids growing up with cerebral palsy and other conditions that limit mobility, soccer isn’t an option — right?

Wrong.


Kids with disabilities can tear it up on the field too — and an emerging version of soccer in the U.K. is out to prove it.

All photos from the Frame Football Facebook page, used with permission from Richard Seedhouse.

The name of the game is Frame Football, and even though it’s only been around for two years, the Frame Football movement is gaining serious momentum in England, Ireland, and Scotland.

It all started when a grassroots football club for kids with disabilities suddenly found itself with eight players who used walkers (“frames”).

This gave the U.K.-based Coundon Court Football Club an idea. For the first time ever, they hosted a game where all the kids on both teams used frames. Frame Football was born.

Before frame football, many “frame players” missed out on the action on the field, even in leagues for kids with disabilities. But when Frame Football started, those same kids got to be the all-stars.

The sport has become increasingly popular: Coundon Court Football Club even held its first ever Frame Football tournament last July.

“The game has gone mad,” says Richard Seedhouse, the sport's founder.

Watching Frame Football is pretty much just watching good old soccer, with a few rule exceptions.

For example, touching the ball with your hands is still off-limits, but using your frame to assist with dribbling is A-OK. And, of course, Frame Football involves a little extra equipment.

Most of the players use “reverse walkers,” which have no barriers in the front that would interfere with, say, a soccer ball. The frames are made of aluminum, which is lightweight but strong enough to provide posture support. And a bar in the back provides stimulus to the hip extensors, prompting the player to take that next step toward the goal.

Each child’s walker can also be equipped with grips, belts, and pads for additional support. Or they can be tricked out with heftier wheels for rougher terrain — it all depends on the child’s unique needs and what they want to do.

Frame Football is an awesome example of how kids of all abilities can do a whole lot — starting with a rough-and-tumble game of soccer.

When they’re out on the field, kids learn more than how to pass and dribble and wipe out gracefully (or not so much). They develop confidence. They start to see themselves as part of a community. And they might even realize they're stronger than they thought.

Those kinds of things tend to stick with kids when they’re growing up. All they need is a chance to step away from the sidelines and get into the game.

Courtesy of Verizon
True

If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

via @Todd_Spence / Twitter

Seven years ago, Bill Murray shared a powerful story about the importance of art. The revelation came during a discussion at the National Gallery in London for the release of 2014's "The Monuments Men." The film is about a troop of soldiers on a mission to recover art stolen by the Nazis.

After his first time performing on stage in Chicago, Murray was so upset with himself that he contemplated taking his own life.

"I wasn't very good, and I remember my first experience, I was so bad I just walked out — out onto the street and just started walking," he said.

Keep Reading Show less