The myths and prejudices surrounding women’s football are manifold, as are those concerning the risks and benefits for the health of female players. Objective data on these issues is still scarce, however, as most research is carried out on men. Consequently, most of the scientific recommendations for the women’s game have so far been based on research directed at men, which is not always appropriate or ideal.

With that in mind, the FIFA Medical Assessment and Research Centre (F-MARC) decided to review and summarize current scientific knowledge on health issues concerning women players for the first time. Drawing on its own research data from the past ten years, a comprehensive report was recently published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine (guest authors Jiri Dvorak, Astrid Junge, Colin Fuller and Paul McCrory).

As it is not only team doctors but also you as a player, your coaches and the female referees who need to know how to stay fit and healthy and be aware of issues specifically affecting women, the booklet “Health and fitness of the female football player” has been created from this body of knowledge. It addresses the health and fitness of female footballers and how these aspects differ from the men’s game. The booklet aims to answer your questions on injury prevention, nutrition, bone protection and female-specific issues.

It provides you with a truly practical guide on how to protect your health and fitness in daily life, while also allowing you to take responsibility and make informed decisions, irrespective of whether you play for fun or in a national team. The booklet, which has been written in understandable layman’s language, is available in all four official FIFA languages (English, French, German and Spanish) and can be ordered from the FIFA Medical Department in Zurich or downloaded here

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