Swedish football club Malmö FF has partnered with upper secondary school Malmö Fria Läroverk to create Sweden’s first FIFA academy eAkademin.
As part of the deal, students will have the opportunity to combine their regular high school education with lectures and training about FIFA.
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Via a translated release, Niclas Carlnén, CEO of Malmö FF, said: “The basic idea is that through the sports academy students will get the tools needed to succeed as a person. Through the programme, students can get a good basis for a civilian career while enabling a more professional investment in esports where they are trained by some of Sweden’s best esports and instructors.”
Students will be able to attend FIFA training twice a week, with participants being assigned a health coach. The health coach will oversee physical training, ergonomics, mental health, nutrition and sleep. By combining FIFA lectures with health lessons the school wants to educate students on the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle while working in esports.
Moreover, the FIFA curriculum was inspired by the main elements that Malmö FF’s professional FIFA players focus on. This includes their training regime for physical activity, health and esports.
Filip Ahlström, Project Manager of Esports at Malmö FF, added: “The development in esports goes the same way as football has done in the last 30 years. To succeed in esports, just as in any other sport, you need to take care of your body and your health. We are convinced that regular physical activity, diet and sleep are important pieces of the puzzle to perform in esports. At the academy, students will have the best conditions to do this.”
According to the release, Malmö Fria Läroverk’s concept is based on research studies that show that physical activity during the school day has positive effects on memory, learning, concentration and student behaviour.
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Henrik Jönsson, Teacher and Training Manager at Malmö Fria Läroverk, commented: “At Malmö Fria Läroverk we offer both study and vocational high school programmes and we see esports in collaboration with Malmö FF as a current and natural addition to our existing training options in football, ice hockey and fitness and health.”
Esports Insider says: The eAkademin is set to become the first FIFA academy on a high school level in Europe, directly connecting students with esports. Moreover, Malmö is a great city to kickstart esports at a high school level, as it has been a popular destination for esports events. Hopefully, we will see more high schools around Europe introduce an esports-based curriculum.