GO Soccer Mums is designed for women to play in a social and judgement-free environment. It’s not just for mums but for all women from all walks of life. It doesn’t matter if you’ve never kicked a ball before!
To celebrate our GO Soccer Mums community, we’re gathering stories from participants and sharing one per month with our wider football family. Today, Justine from South East United FC speaks about how the program has inspired her both mentally and physically.
“I joined go soccer mums because I’d never played team sport beyond school, and I wanted to make an effort to heal my relationship with exercise, I saw the advertisement for the program on my local Facebook group, a short 6-week program was going to be perfect for a beginner like me. I was very nervous to go, however my coach Merve was so warm and welcoming.
I wasn’t like the other girls, there were lots of things that stood out about me. I was a different size, ethnicity and fitness level to all of them, and it didn’t matter, I was there for me and accepted, differences and all. I documented the mental and physical experience I had with joining the program on my Instagram @keenjuztine.
The GO Soccer Program has had a significant impact on me. Each week for warm up we would jog a few times around a marked area which was one of the motivating factors that lead me to start my running journey. I found I didn’t actually hate running if I took it at my own pace and outside of the program continued to work on building my running and fitness levels.
The program is important to me because I enjoy connecting socially and doing activities outdoors, I’ve never enjoyed the “gym grind” and was always up in my head about team sport and feeling as though I might be letting the team down due to low confidence and skill levels.
But with GO Soccer Mums the pressure to be good isn’t there. It’s just about getting out and giving it a go. If one week I show up and I have to take the session easy, it doesn’t matter, it’s just about doing my best, whatever that is from week to week.
My confidence and fitness have both increased in playing soccer and I’ve even joined the Women’s Carnival of Nations event where we’ll play other teams, and signed up for a second season which even surprised me because I never intended to continue with soccer beyond the six weeks.
I am pleased that I’m taking care of me – mentally and physically and setting a good example for my son, Riley.
Go Soccer Mums is time for me, where I get to experience the thumping heart exercise endorphins and build my community connections, where I feel whatever, my struggles are, mental, physical, or both, the environment is judgement free and I can be authentically me knowing I’m safe from judgement, supported and encouraged.
Justine – South East United FC