Saturday, February 2, 2008

Futsal: If it doesn't kill me, kermi!

I am a huge fan of football (a.k.a. soccer). But I am not the type of fan who knows absolutely everything there is to know about the game. I just know that I like it and it is one of the sport that I can actually spend time watching every chance I get.

My feet have never experienced the feel of kicking a soccer/futsal ball in a friendly game. So when Norman invited me to try it, my first and immediate reaction was to decline because I was pretty sure I would look stupid playing it. Typically, being a friend, he told me that I can do it and threw in encouraging comments like "madali lang yon, promise".

I wanted to see if I I finally agreed. I figured, I should at least try doing it, right? It is my chance to see how I would cope with this kind of game given my conviction that I have zero talent in sports that require the use of balls. After all, I did promise myself that this year I will try to explore and do new things and I figured this would be a good start.

Decision made, I tried to ask some of my friends about Futsal (like if it is something that I can actually do, and so on). Ani told me she tried it once and she had a blast. She added that it involves a lot of kicking and running, which she said she has seen me do anyway, so yes, I would probably have fun playing it as well. Now, put that way, my doubts subsided and I began to feel pretty much happy with my decision to try it.

Finally, the day for my first-ever Futsal friendly game arrived. Bixie and Macky joined me (which further increased my confidence since we were all beginners). Tristan, one of the guys from the office, taught us some basics and let us practice while waiting for the others to arrive. The moves he taught us were surprisingly easy and my confidence went a notch higher. I thought, "Oh-kay, I can do this".

It was only when the "game" started that I began to appreciate my level of "Futsal-cluelessness". I can see what was going on, but my brain failed to quickly and fully process it. Everything was so new to me. I totally had no idea what I was supposed to be doing. There was a point that I got so confused, all these people kicking and running for this one ball and I was there in the middle of it trying so hard to be useful. On top of all these craziness, I kept repeating over and over in my mind that I cannot use my hands and that I must, MUST, not accidentaly (horror!) kick someone the way I am used to kicking.

Thankfully, the game ended injury-free and with much goodwill all around. I think Bixie, Macky and I did well as beginners. We tried our best out there and we had so much fun. Futsal is definitely a different ball game. It passed my personal gauge for the required level of challenge and difficulty to be enticing enough for me to play. As the game ended, Futsal had a new convert. I am now inclined to embrace a sport that requires the use of that I can actually, really, play.

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