European Fans in Training (EuroFIT)

Background

EuroFIT is a groundbreaking health and wellbeing programme for male football fans aged between 30-65 that harnesses the intense loyalty they have for football, attracting them to a lifestyle change programme delivered by football coaches at club facilities.

The EuroFIT consortium of top universities from across Europe, technology providers and Healthy Stadia have worked with over 20 football clubs in the UK, Netherlands, Norway and Portugal to develop this model, which has been evaluated through a randomised control trial.

EuroFIT video

Gold-Standard Evidence Base

The programme is the only of its type to be based-upon a ‘gold standard’ scientific evidence based gained through a trail with over 20 clubs in England, the Netherlands, Norway and Portugal.

EuroFIT uses cutting-edge behavioural science and technology in a bid to prevent, rather than treat, chronic illnesses associated with obesity and inactivity.

The project has already been a major success, changing the lives of over 1,100 fans across Europe. EuroFIT participants have made long-term, sustainable changes to their lifestyles including increased levels of physical activity, improved diet and weight loss. Additional outcomes also included reduced alcohol consumption, reduced blood pressure, reduced fasting insulin, and improved levels of self-reported wellbeing.

The EuroFIT Programme

EuroFIT consists of a 12-week lifestyle programme focused on increasing levels of physical activity and reducing sitting time, and uses cutting-edge wearable technology to help men accurately monitor physical activity and sitting time. The programme also supports positive lifestyles changes such as improving diet and lowering alcohol consumption.

New clubs, associations and league operators are now looking to implement the programme owing to its clinically proven effectiveness. EuroFIT has already been adopted by the Portuguese Football Federation as a key component of Portugal’s national physical activity strategy. After the success of the EuroFIT trial and pilot phase, we are now launching a scaled-up implementation of EuroFIT, as a quality-assured programme for use by individual clubs and regional/national football organisations.

EuroFIT sessions take place at club facilities including iconic football stadia
Step count and sitting time is monitored through a wearable device, whilst weight loss is also measured
The male-only group dynamic creates a safe space for men to talk about their health
Components of EuroFIT

  • Pre-programme participant screening is performed to exclude people who might be at risk of adverse consequences
  • Fifteen to twenty men are included per intake of participants
  • There are twelve sessions per intake (one session per week)
  • Each session involves a theoretical component (e.g. focusing on a healthy diet, or how to fit more physical activity into one’s daily life) and a physical activity component with exercises and walking football
  • The programme also employs a participant toolkit to support goal setting and self-regulation skills.

Training and Materials

  • Clear instructions and background information for each of the 12 sessions detailed in bespoke coach and participant manuals
  • Training of a minimum of two coaches at a two day workshop to gain the necessary skills to deliver EuroFIT
  • An online portal containing all resources needed to deliver EuroFIT, plus an online  monitoring tool and QA framework

Case Study:

Portuguese Football Federation

On 11 April 2017, World Physical Activity Day, EuroFIT played a key role in the launch of the Portuguese government’s National Physical Activity programme.

A formal partnership to roll out EuroFIT was signed between the Portuguese government’s Directorate-General for Health and the Portuguese Football Federation. This partnership positions EuroFIT as a core component of Portugal’s national physical activity strategy, helping overweight male football fans to lose weight and get active.

The launch event was supported by the Portuguese government’s Directorate-General for Health, the Portuguese Football Federation, the University of Lisbon-Faculty of Human Medicine, the EuroFIT consortium, and the World Health Organisation.

Licensing EuroFIT

The EuroFIT consortium has developed a flexible licensing system enabling individual clubs and national football organisations to deliver the programme, launched in Brussels alongside the EU, World Health Organisation and the governing body of European football, UEFA.

Healthy Stadia is the License Administrator, acting as a first point of contact for all National Associations / Federations, League Operators and professional football clubs interested in delivering the EuroFIT programme.

Healthy Stadia will coordinate training either on a club-by-club basis or via a train-the-trainer methodology which will involve delivering training to a National Coordination Partner who will in turn transfer their knowledge and skills to club coaches.

Key Benefits of Adopting EuroFIT

  • Grounded on a clinical evidence base
  • Only programme of this type tested with clubs across multiple countries
  • Full confidence for commissioning agencies to invest in programme

  • Standardised model, but flexible enough for different country settings
  • Delivered at single clubs or across multiple clubs with national partner
  • Accomplishes CSR, fan liaison & grassroots participation objectives

EuroFIT for Associations & Leagues
EuroFIT for Individual Clubs

Get in touch

EuroFIT is now available for all interested football clubs, leagues and national associations to deliver to their fans. If you, one of your team, or even your local commissioners would like to speak to us about how we can develop a successful EuroFIT programme with your club, Healthy Stadia would be more than happy provide advice and guidance on how to find suitable funding. For more information about EuroFIT download our brochure or get in touch by clicking the button below.