27 Sep The Football Family Supports World Heart Day 2019
Competition is at the heart of professional football but when it comes to tackling cardiovascular disease, the football family is all on the same team.
Over 35 UEFA Member Associations will support World Heart Day 2019, the world’s largest platform for raising awareness of cardiovascular disease (CVD), which includes heart disease and stroke.
Organised by the World Heart Federation, and supported by Healthy Stadia and UEFA, World Heart Day takes place on 29 September every year and aims to encourage individuals, communities and businesses, including football organisations, to help protect our hearts and improve our quality of life.
Cardiovascular disease is accountable for nearly half of all deaths from non-communicable diseases (NCDs), making it the world’s leading cause of death, claiming 17.9 million lives prematurely each year. It can also make life difficult for the millions of people around the world that live with cardiovascular disease.
However, through simple changes to our everyday lifestyles, such as taking more physical activity, eating a balanced diet, moderating our alcohol consumption and stopping smoking we can all work towards lowering the burden of CVD.
The good news is that the football family is doing their bit to help tackle cardiovascular disease by raising awareness of heart disease and stroke, delivering bespoke community health programmes and introducing matchday and organisational policies to encourage their fans and staff to lead healthier lives.
This World Heart Day, UEFA Member Associations will be using current and former players to promote heart health across their social media channels and are asking you as an individual to make a promise to your heart and to your friends and family. Here are some examples below:
- A promise to our families to cook and eat more healthily
- A promise to our children to do more exercise and help them to be more active
- A promise as a fan to walk, cycle or use public transport to travel to football matches
- A promise as a parent to moderate our alcohol consumption
- A promise as a coach to quit smoking
Together we can educate, inspire and motivate people to keep their hearts healthy while encouraging them to act as influencers themselves. By make small changes to our lifestyles and the places where we live, work and play we can have a huge impact on our health and the health of our communities.
And of course, playing recreational football on a regular basis is a great way to reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease whilst having fun in the process.
The Danish Football Association is even using recreational football to improve the quality of life for individuals in Denmark living with cardiovascular disease – you can find out more about the ‘Football for the Heart’ project here.
Join the cause and share your promise by taking a photo performing the < ♥ > gesture and sharing it on social media using the hashtag #WorldHeartDay.
You can keep up to date with World Heart Day 2019 on social media by following these accounts: