About CP Football

The CommBank Pararoos are Australia's men’s national team for footballers with cerebral palsy, acquired brain injury and symptoms of stroke.

CP football is a seven-a-side sport with smaller goals, 30-minute halves and no offside, where players are classed as FT1, FT2 and FT3 depending on how their disability affects a player, with at least one FT1 player and a maximum of one FT3 player required at all times.

Cerebral palsy (CP) describes a group of permanent disorders of the development of movement and posture that are attributed to non-progressive disturbances that occurred in the developing foetal or infant brain.

Motor disability can range from minimal to profound - from weakness in one hand, to an almost complete lack of voluntary movement.

Spastic hemiplegia, where one half of the body has difficulty with voluntary movement, is the most common presentation of cerebral palsy. In Australia, approximately 40% of people with cerebral palsy have hemiplegia, including some of our players.

Every 20 hours, an Australian child is born with cerebral palsy. It is the most common physical disability in childhood. There are more than 34,000 Australians living with CP.

Several legendary CommBank Pararoos, Benny Roche (59 caps), David Barber (104 caps) and Ben Atkins (75 caps) were all born with cerebral palsy.

Acquired brain injury (ABI) is any type of brain damage that happens after birth. That damage can be caused by an accident or trauma, by a stroke, by a brain infection, by alcohol or other drug abuse or by diseases of the brain like Parkinson’s disease.

Around 700,000 Australians live with an ABI, half of these are aged between 15 and 34. Approximately 30,000 Australian children live with an ABI.

Symptoms of stroke can include muscle weakness, paralysis, abnormal or lost sensation on one side of the body, difficulty speaking, confusion, problems with vision, dizziness, loss of balance and coordination.

1 in 6 Australians will have a stroke in their lifetime, including 600 children each year. Every 30 seconds, someone in Australia has a stroke. Australia has more than 420,000 stroke survivors, 30% of which are working age.

CommBank Pararoos Chris Pyne (104 caps) and Augustine Murphy (14 caps) are both survivors of brain injury.

Credit: Football Australia

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