1. ITV Report

Football league helping men to lose weight

Written by Alice Key:

For most people losing weight can often be a challenge - the gym can be intimidating, fad diets look unappetising and it’s hard to feel motivated in front of a fitness DVD at home.

So a football league was set up to offer something different for men in the West Midlands.

Man v Fat Football was designed for men who want to shift the pounds but also love playing the beautiful game.

Each week you weigh in before the game and then warm up before playing a 30-minute game.

Not only does the team win points in goal, you also earn bonus ones from the weigh-in results which get added to the final score.

Mark Durose joined the first ever team at Fox Hollies Leisure Centre, he now coaches a second team just 20 minutes down the road.

The original league, which was started in partnership with Solihull Council, saw some surprising results.

In that scheme 95% of players lost weight and 62% hit their 5% weight loss target.

There are now 16 leagues in the West Midlands and 6 in the East Midlands. Credit: ITV News Central

It's the first weight loss scheme to officially be endorsed by the Football Association and the ‘biggest losers’ got to play at St George’s Park in Staffordshire as a reward.

Following its initial success in the Midlands, leagues have been popping up all over the country and there are now over 120 teams nationwide which play on a regular basis.