Scottish football fans regain a FFIT Focus as Football Fans in Training returns to St Mirren FC

Football Fans in Training (FFIT, pronounced FIT) is set to return to St Mirren FC as community programmes start to get back underway after months of Covid-19 restriction.

All sessions will be following Scottish Government guidelines in relation to health and safety during Covid-19, to help create a safe and welcoming environment for football fans to get back in action.

St Mirren FC Charitable Foundation is ready to get a new season of FFIT up and running, and is encouraging supporters who are interested in participating to sign up via email – [email protected]

FFIT is Europe's leading healthy lifestyle programme, powered by football clubs in a number of different countries across the continent. The programme was born in Scotland where it continues to have a hugely positive effect as thousands of participants from the last decade can attest.

Open to both men and women (delivered via separate programmes), FFIT provides football fans with an opportunity to become healthier, lose weight, and become happier at the same time.

Men and women aged 35-65 with a waist of 38 inches or a belly size of 40 inches are invited to participate.

The 12-week programme (plus a 'week zero' session) aims to help participants:

  • Increase knowledge of diet & nutrition
  • Improve lifestyle choices
  • Increase physical activity amongst participants
  • Reduce weight and waist measurements
  • Increase engagement in other physical activity

The programme was created by the SPFL Trust in partnership with the University of Glasgow. It is funded in Scotland, by the Scottish Government.

Research has determined that the power of being ‘in your own club’ (defined as being behind the scenes, in the dressing rooms, by the pitch) has a strong motivating factor, and results it a very much higher level of programme ‘completers’, the rate of which is generally 75%, which is well above metrics recorded in non-football environments.

Further long-term research has revealed that participants in FFIT not only lost weight but that they largely kept it off and maintained a healthier lifestyle.

SPFL Trust chief executive Nicky Reid comments:

"We are delighted that St Mirren is delivering Football Fans in Training, this season. We’ve seen over ten years the life-changing impact that FFIT can have on men and women. Over three-quarters of those who start a FFIT programme complete it, and most keep the weight they lose off, in the long run. It’s the ultimate win-win, and so after the strict pandemic restrictions this was one of our biggest priorities, to get FFIT back – and everyone focused!"

St Mirren FC Charitable Foundation CEO Gayle Brannigan adds:

We are absolutely delighted to deliver FFIT in-house, post lockdown, it is a brilliant sport intervention programme with many health and wellbeing benefits. With every intake, we see outstanding results from both men and women groups from an educational weight loss point of view. The feedback we have received from the community at the moment is that the greatest need is for mental health support and this programme delivers. We look forward to our imminent launch and documenting the positive impacting outcomes along the line.”