2018 World Cup And Health of Nigerian Fans

Football has always been one of the most prominent sports in the country. With the world cup starting, the whole world will be in a football-fueled frenzy for the next few weeks. This tournament which holds every four years is uniting everyone in the spirit of sportsmanship as each one supports their team till a winner emerges.

In Nigeria, football is an everyday occurrence, with the world cup being just a culmination of the sports highlight. Basically, everyone with even the remotest access to mass media (T.V or Radio) has a team or club they support all year round.

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Football in itself is a pretty awesome sport health wise.  As is obvious to anyone watching, football is an intensely physical sport. The training and the actual play are geared at keeping the players alert both physically and mentally. The sprints, the kicks and throws, maneuvers, and most importantly the rigorous training that professional players undergo, exercises the entire body. The benefits can be categorized into;

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  1. Footballers get to work out more
  2. Pro-footballers live a very active lifestyle with basic full-body training at least five days a week
  3. They have fun while training and this will help to make the exercising habit stick.
  4. Full effective cardio workout


  1. They learn about sportsmanship and how to react to disappointments
  2. Adrenaline pumps during the game reduces negative hormones and help to combat depression
  3. Develop work ethics that can guide all future endeavors successfully


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The risks to player’s health comes in terms of rough players’ head kicks, head butts, tackles and sprains. These risks come as hazards of the job, and with the pay most players get, can be easily treated. The rare cases of career altering injuries often get sponsors or insurance to cover them. The mild concussions might also occur in


For the viewers however, and most sedentary fans that don’t actually play, the health risks might be worse.


  1. ADVERTS: An estimated 2 images per minute of alcoholic beverages was broadcast during the EURO2012 games. With about half of the world glued to their screen and following every play, this is the biggest threat to health. In Nigeria, even with access to the games on personal tv, a lot of fans prefer the viewing centers. These centers provide an avenue for discourse and lots of fun, and unfortunately, plenty alcohol. This serves right into the purpose of the Ads. Why encourage people, whose only claim to exercising is going up the stairs at work, to indulge in alcohol? In this regard, football matches run mainly at the risk of their biggest assets; the fans.

  1. Junk-Food

    Just like any television program, people tend to get the munchies when watching games. Grabbing a quick, easy bite which can be passed around is the easiest thing to do. The number of calories in these snacks, for 2hours per game and about 64 matches is far from healthy.

  2. Violence: the level of commitment and that fans exhibit for their favorite teams is simply astonishing some times. Violence sometimes erupts as a result of football games particularly among die-hard Nigerian fans.

  3. Lifestyle

    The lifestyle of an average sports fan, save for adrenaline pumps from cheering or booing teams, is not quite active. Spending long hours of straining their eyes before a screen, while remaining immobile on a spot leads to a very sedentary lifestyle.

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Despite all these negatives, football has made an indelible mark on popular culture. Uniting the entire globe at least for the few weeks of the world cup is not an easy feat. The Health facts team wises everyone a wonderful game as we cheer on our national teams.

And remember to get some action going by kicking the ball a few times yourself.

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