A FOOTBALL-focussed weight loss programme for men is on the lookout for new players in Redditch.

MAN v FAT is specifically aimed at overweight and obese men which combines football with weight loss goals.

Last year the programme helped 90 men from Worcestershire tackle obesity and lose 800 pounds of weight.

The programme has 6,500 players taking part in over 100 clubs across the UK and has launched in Redditch.

Players meet at Woodfield Academy on Wednesday evenings, with sessions also taking place on Monday evenings at Wyre Forest Leisure Centre in Kidderminster.

Players are weighed before playing a 30-minute game of six-a-side, with extra goal bonuses awarded to teams based on the amount of weight players have lost. Weight loss and match scores then contribute to teams’ league positions within a club.

They also receive additional support including healthy meal recipe ideas and tips on general fitness.

Iain Rob Wright, an author from Redditch, has improved his fitness and confidence by joining his local team.

He said: “MAN v FAT has allowed me to rediscover my love of playing football, and has given me something to get excited about every week. I’m getting fit without even thinking about it, and I don’t have to worry about boring gyms or miserable jogs in the rain.

“There is a fitness crisis in this country and part of the problem is that some people don’t enjoy running or going to the gym. MAN v FAT however, takes the boredom out of exercise by giving members a chance to exercise in a fun, semi-competitive environment. It also has a great social aspect as football brings together people from all walks of life. Best of all, everyone plays at their own pace.

“The programme has allowed me to make a ton of new buddies, without a calorie-filled pint in sight. It’s built my confidence in a lot of ways.”

The scheme was created by Andrew Shanahan, who, fed-up with traditional weight loss classes primarily aimed at women, decided to develop a programme that combines the beautiful game with achievable weight loss goals for men.

Richard Crick, MAN v FAT’s head of football said: “We are extremely proud of the progress made by our players, coaches and the wider team involved at our Worcestershire clubs.

“Our Redditch club currently has spaces for new players, so if you’re ready to shed some of the Christmas excess, while having fun and making new friends in the process, get in touch.”

Players can join up by calling 0345 163 1042 or emailing football@manvfat.com.