Football is all about winning. But a health and wellness coach in Basingstoke is urging the players in her football teams to lose – not matches, but their pounds.

Emma Evans is the head coach of the Basingstoke Man v Fat teams that focus on losing weight by playing football games among themselves.

She has so far helped 172 Basingstoke men lose 756kg weight in two years – an average of 4.3kg per person.

"The most rewarding part of the my job is hearing from members about the healthy habits they have incorporated into their lives which have made a significant impact not only with their weight loss goals, but also improvements to their physical and mental health," Emma said.

"Man v Fat is not just a weight loss programme, it is an awesome community that provides members with fantastic support and it is both an honour and a privilege to be a Man v Fat league coach."

The Man v Fat programme in Basingstoke was started in February 2020 just before the Covid lockdown.

READ MORE: 14 famous faces who have gone to college in Basingstoke at Queen Mary's College

Although the league was formed then, it had to be stopped during the pandemic. The league restarted later that year when the national restrictions eased.

Since then Emma has been on a mission to help Basingstoke men shed weight by playing football and taking care of themselves.

“The programme is for men with a BMI of 27.5 or over," Emma said.

"What we offer them is weekly, small-sided league games, where they have a qualified referee. The players get trophies and medals.

“They get a weekly weigh-in and progress reports and a routine support with motivation. Our website also has recipes and webinars and other useful resources. They can access online exercise classes. And they also have support for their mental health and wellbeing with our new platform, which is Man v Fat Foundations. We are trying to give a holistic approach to their health and wellness and their weight loss journey.”

Emma is a qualified personal trainer and nutritionist who looks after the league.

“I have a good background and experience in health and wellness. I provide general health, lifestyle advice and changes – things that they might want to adopt.”

The Basingstoke league is currently in its fifth season. Each season lasts for about 14 weeks.

SEE ALSO: Cancer survivor mum from US loses money to Basingstoke scammer

“We're at week four of our fifth season now, and we've already lost 97 kilogrammes,” Emma said.

“Basingstoke started as a league of six teams and it has been going good. So we've now expanded to eight teams, and there are a maximum of about 10 to 11 players on each team.”

The Basingstoke League runs on a Tuesday evening from 8 -10pm, sessions are held at The Vyne School.

Individuals may qualify for funding via Hampshire County Council. Members registering with a Hampshire County Council Postcode (excludes Portsmouth & Southampton) will be able to see if they are eligible before making a payment to register.

Man v Fat has nationally helped men lose 196,597kgs.

A message from the editor

Thank you for reading this article - we appreciate your support.

Subscribing means you have unrestricted access to the latest news and reader rewards - all with an advertising-light website.

Don't take my word for it – subscribe here to see for yourself.

Looking to advertise an event? Then check out our free events guide.

Want to keep up with the latest news and join in the debate? You can find and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.