Paphos is gearing up to host a number of events to promote the European Week of Sport, which gets underway on September 23rd, and children are being encouraged to form and register – by Monday – their own football teams to participate in one of the events.
The European Week of Sport is a European Commission initiative and promotes sport and physical activity across Europe.
Supported by the municipality of Paphos, the programme is implemented in Cyprus by the Cyprus sports organisation- Koa- and aims to get the general public, of all ages, moving.
The 2016 European Week of Sport included 15,000 events with 10 million people participating in more than 30 countries with 35 partners across Europe. Its #BeActive message to promote sport and physical activity, reached 200 million Europeans.
“The idea is get us all out of our chairs and help us all to get fit and moving,” said a spokeswoman for the Paphos municipality organisers.
Four events will be held in Paphos during the week of September 23rd- September 30th, with the first involving children forming their own seven aside football teams to play at Pafiakos stadium in Paphos.
Children born in 2007, 2008 and 2009 are eligible. They are all able to play on the same team and the municipality is accepting team entries until Monday.
“This event is to encourage children to take part and create their own team, and especially to give a chance to those to play who aren’t part of a team already or an academy,” said the spokeswoman.
She added that the idea is to play football ‘how it used to be played by kids’, on the streets or playgrounds, kicking a ball about with neighbours and friends, for fun.
“It’s not about prizes but the taking part, exercising and most importantly, having fun,” she said.
The event will take place on September 23rd and starts at 8.30am.
On September 26th, a second event will take place outside Paphos town hall aimed at getting the public running and walking. Professionals will show attendees how to warm up properly, there will be demonstrations of Yoga for runners, a physiotherapist and a dietician will also be on hand and there will be advice given on the correct clothes and shoes to wear.
“This is for people and children of all ages and the experts will be on hand to give their advice,” she said.
The event is supported by the Stelios Kyriakides association, the Pericles Demetriou association, west coast runners and the Paphos running club.
Families, children and individuals will be able to try out tennis on September 27th, from 4-7pm with the Paphos Tennis Club at the newly upgraded Opap Park in the centre of Paphos. Instructors will be available to give advice and see if participants like playing, said the spokeswoman.
“People will be lent racquets and tennis balls to have a go and see if they enjoy it,” she said.
On September 30th, the week will culminate with a ‘sports village’ involving 20 associations and 16 sports demonstrations will take place. Participants will start at Kennedy Square and make their way along Makarios Avenue, she said.
“This is an interactive sports event, so, for example, fitness instructors will lead the public and they will follow their lead.”
Sports on offer include: taekwando, judo, volley ball, tennis, archery, shooting and gymnastics.
Families, children and people of all ages are welcome, she said.
This event will run from 10am- 1pm.
Entrance to all of the events is free.
To register a seven aside football team: 26 822 854.