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GAA Super Games Centres

Action from the Louth Super Games Centre on March 22nd, 2019
Action from the Louth Super Games Centre on March 22nd, 2019

What are GAA Super Games Centres?

  • Small-sided games format e.g. 9-a-side
  • Aimed at youth players aged 12-17 years
  • Informal playing opportunities i.e no emphasis on winning
  • All players get to play (no substitutes) irrespective of playing ability or experience
  • No coaching inputs
  • Where participants oversee the organisation of the games
  • Youth centred and where they set the prevailing values
  • Super Games can be run in Post Primary Schools/Clubs/Centres of Excellence
  • Super Games are not result dependent

 Why are we delivering the GAA Super Games Centre experience?

The GAA 'Play to Stay' Ethos

In recent years, the GAA has seen a significant trend within the youth population indicated by a decline in the level of participation. This is denoted by a 49% drop off rate between the 12 - 17 year age groups.

On foot of this, a research study was commissioned in 2013 to investigate a solution, namely the GAA Super Games Centers which were located in 10 Counties across the 4 Provinces. This provided us with valuable quantitative and qualitative information highlighting the driving forces behind continued participation for youth participants e.g. freedom to explore, peer-to-peer interaction, an increase in the amount of game time.

During 2018:

•      6,484 Club based Super Games blitzes were held with 17,017 participants taking part

•      2,845 Post Primary School Super Games blitzes were held with 15,259 participants taking part

•      In total, 32,276 youth players took part in GAA Super Games in 2018

GAA Super Games Centres were developed to provide playing opportunities to those not adequately catered for or served by regular school or club games through traditional competitive structures.

Action from a recent Super Games Blitz Day 
Action from a recent Super Games Blitz Day 

How can GAA Super Games Centres be organised & delivered?

GAA Super Games Centres are currently organised and delivered in a number of different locations nationwide. Below is an outline of the current GAA Super Games Centres delivery formats -

Post Primary School Super Games: Blitz/Series

•    4-6 week programme delivered over 1 to 2 blocks per year with PPS students

•    Once off Super Games Blitz’ delivered at various intervals throughout the year in the post primary school setting

GAA Club Super Games: Blitz/Series

•    4-6 week programme delivered over 1 to 2 blocks per year with Club players at an agreed age grade.

•    Once off Super Games Blitz’ delivered at various intervals throughout the year in a Club setting

Provincial/County Blitz Super Games: Blitz/Series

•   4 week programme delivered once a week for an hour. Open to all Club players from the specific Province or County at an agreed age grade.

Players pictured at the Louth Super Games Centre in March of this year
Players pictured at the Louth Super Games Centre in March of this year

GAA Super Games Centres should provide the below, at a minimum, for participants:

· Minimum 6-week period of activity

· 60 mins per week

· Games Based Approach (Small-sided games)

· Play to Stay Values/Minimal Coaching Input

· Dedicated Super Games Centre Coordinator

· Suitable facilities - Indoor and/or Outdoor

Since 2016, Sky Sports have partnered with the GAA to provide support to each GAA Super Games Centre through the provision of kits & equipment. In total, 1,120 kits have been provided to Super Games Centres nationally by Sky Sports. In addition to this, Sky Sports have worked with the GAA to coordinate fourteen Sky Sports Ambassador visits to GAA Super Games Centres throughout the Country. These have included visits by well known GAA players to their local Super Games Centres such as -

Conor McManus to the Monaghan Super Games Centre,

TJ Reid to the Castlecomer CS Super Games Centre

Joe Canning to the St Brigids Loughrea Super Games Centre

Paul Geaney to the Tralee CBS Super Games Centre

Andy Moran to the Rice College Westport Super Games Centre

Ryan O Rourke to the Leitrim Super Games Centre

For more information on Super Games Centres in your county, please contact the relevant GAA Games Development Personnel in your county, here

For more information on GAA Participation initiatives contact the GAA Games Development office at tracy.bunyan@gaa.ie or 01 819 2356.

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