#GAAyouth Forum 2017 - Update on the Forum!
The #GAAyouth Forum took place on Saturday 28th October in Croke Park. More than 500 young players (aged 12 - 21 years old) from all 32 Counties were present on the day.
As part of the Forum, which was supported by Sky Sports, young players received an opportunity to participate in a range of activities including:
- *Exhibition Zone: *Interactive demos about everything from making healthy smoothies to hurley care and repair!
- *Fuelling your Body - How Food Can Impact Your Game: *Sharon Courtney (Monaghan Ladies' Footballer and Sport & Exercise Nutritionist) led a really fun, interactive workshop that looked at what a young GAA player should eat in order to perform well on the pitch. Players had a chance to fill in a personal food diary, to learn more about the Food Pyramid and to discuss what best to eat and drink before and after training or a game.
- *Getting the Right Balance - Juggling Demands as a Youth Player: *One of the biggest challenges for young players is trying to juggle all the demands that are on them between school, study, sport and socialising. Orlagh Farmer (Cork Ladies' Footballer) and Dr. Wesley O'Brien (Lecturer in UCC) as well as the Sky Sports Mentors looked at how young people can balance all these demands. As part of the workshop the young players had the change to fill in a lifestyle wheel and also to learn about the 10 Lifestyle Commandments: think positive; exercise daily; eat healthy; study smart; worry less; get 8 hours sleep; less phone time; friends and family; time to yourself; and that its okay to say no!
- *Getting the Best from Yourself - Understanding Your Fitness: *Cathal Cregg (Connacht GAA S&C Officer) delivered an excellent workshop that looked at how young players can monitor and improve their own personal fitness. Apart from learning about the science behind their fitness, the young players learned how to track their own exercise and to implement simple fitness tests at home with their friends and teammates.
- *Your Mental Health - What Helps! *A team of facilitators from Jigsaw ran a series of small workshops around Mental Health. The young players learned about the '5-a-day' for positive Mental Health: 1. Connect; 2. Get Active; 3. Notice; 4. Get Involved; 5. Give. They also learned how involvement in sport and GAA can improve their Mental Health. For more information about Jigsaw and this workshop see www.jigsaw.ie
- Becoming a Coach - Stories from the Field: Some of the biggest names in Gaelic Games came together to share their experiences of becoming a coach. Ciarán Kilkenny (Dublin Footballer), Juliet Murphy (Former Cork All-Ireland Winning Captain), David Herity (Former Kilkenny Hurler and Dublin Camogie Manager) and Mick Bohan (Dublin Ladies Football Manager) all got involved and shared their personal stories - who had influenced them, why they started coaching, what lessons they have learned since they started coaching. To see them share some of their words of wisdom click here!
- *High Volume & High Impact Injuries - From Prevention to Rehabilitation: *Andy Moran (Mayo Footballer) and Podge Collins (Clare Hurler) joined Tony Óg Regan (Psychologist) and Thomas Divilly (Chartered Physiotherapist) to look at Injury Prevention and Recovery from a number of different angles. Thomas shared key steps that should be taken to prevent and to physically rehabilitate after injury while Tony Óg led a discussion around the mental recovery required after a young player suffers an injury. Lauren Guilfoyle (GAA Youth Committee) then led a Q&A with Andy and Podge, who both shared their personal experiences of dealing with injuries.
- *Lunchtime Laughs with Rory's Stories: *Rory O'Connor was joined by 'Cecil' to do a comedy gig with all the young players at lunchtime. Aside from plenty of laughter, Rory shared some key ideas about respecting people on and off the field, about the need to develop your skills and how commitment is key. Rory O'Connor gave a quick summary of his session that you can see here!
- Q&A with the Sky Sports Mentors: At the end of the day all of the young players attended a Q&A with the Sky Sports Mentors - Brendan Maher (Tipperary), Cora Staunton (Mayo) and Paul Geaney (Kerry). To see what took place at the Q&A click here.
The Youth Committee, LGFA, Camogie Association, GAA Handball and the Youth Reps all made sure it was a memorable day for all involved and players left the Forum with plenty of hints, tips and selfies!
If you'd like further information or to purchase one of the unique #GAAyouth jerseys please contact Caoimhe - firstname.lastname@example.org or 01 865 8622.