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Has your body given you the message that it’s time to hang up the boots?

Are you ready to give back to the game that gave you so much joy and fulfilment?

Retiring from sport can be difficult, no matter what level you play at. Getting out of the house to train once or twice a week, along with a game on the weekend with your mates is an addictive experience with lifelong memories attached.

Many sports are played in this great country, and the truth is that social sport is the backbone of this nation's leisure time. The enjoyment we all get out of playing sports with our mates keeps us going for years and makes the thought of having to retire at some stage very daunting.

Unfortunately for all of us, there comes a stage in our lives where our body just can't handle it anymore, and it is time to give away the game that you love. This can leave feelings of sadness, disappointment, and anxiousness for even the strongest of us.

These feelings are normal, giving away something you have loved your entire life is very difficult, however, there are many ways you can stay involved in your beloved sport and club.

Many people opt against volunteering at their local club, but those that do find thorough enjoyment in giving back to the game that gave them so much to begin with.

There are many roles available for you, ranging from coaching to being a trainer, all the way to running the bar/canteen. If you're somebody that's just retired, I highly suggest putting your hand up to run the bar as they may pay you in beer if you’re lucky!

If you are a current player, think about all the voluntary roles at your club. How many people does it take for your club to run on any given match day? Does your club struggle to find enough people to run efficiently?

Insufficient volunteer numbers are an ongoing problem, just think that when it is time for you to retire, chances are your club will still be encountering the same problem. That’s why you need to make a difference and stay active within your club wherever necessary.

If you have made the decision to retire from sport, I urge you to stay involved in your club in any way that you can. Clubs always need volunteers, and many hands make light work and account for a strong, successful atmosphere.

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