Overview of Playing Football
Football is a great sport that can be played both competitively and recreationally. There are many different variations of football, including touch, flag, and tackle. While each type has slightly different rules and regulations to abide by, the main goal of scoring a touchdown (usually worth 6 points) remains the same.
Types of Football
- Touch: the ball carrier's progress is stopped when a defender places two hands on the player in possession of the ball
- Flag: defenders aim to stop the ball carrier by pulling at flags attached to a belt that is worn around each player's waist
- Tackle: the most extreme version of football, in which full contact is permitted and the ball carrier is ruled down only when taken to the ground by a defender
Recreational football is generally played for pure enjoyment, with the outcome of the game having no significant impact on either team. The rules that govern recreational football tend to be far less strict than competitive football, which results in teams of all different sizes and players with various levels of football experience. This style of play is also extremely convenient for players with limited access to resources, requiring only a grass field as a playing surface.
Competitive football has a strict set of rules and regulations and tends to be full contact, with players wearing protective equipment in the form of helmets and shoulder pads. Unlike recreational football, the outcome of each game is extremely important, as it is reflected in a win-loss record that plays a large role in determining which teams will make the playoffs and ultimately win the league championship.
There are four levels of competitive football: youth, high school, collegiate, and professional. The youth and high school levels are generally open to all interested players. After that, skill level dictates which players will have the opportunity to play at the collegiate level and beyond. Only extremely talented players are recruited to play college football, as it represents the level in which competition heightens and players are vying to make a career out of football.
Professional football (National Football League, Canadian Football League) is reserved for the select few that are among the best football players in the world. Becoming a professional makes playing football a full-time job, and those that achieve great success at the professional level are compensated with millions of dollars per year.