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Former Kerry star Eoin Liston.
Former Kerry star Eoin Liston.

Eoin Liston: 'People need people'

How to Age Well TILDA GAA Spring Series Seminars 2020

Kerry GAA County Health and Wellbeing Committee will host the first TILDA GAA seminar of 2020 next Monday February 10 in the Rose Hotel Tralee. It will run from 7-9pm.

This seminar is open to all members of the community.

Walk ins are welcome and people can register for free here.

Further events are planned for Louth, Galway and Tipperary which will also run from 7-9pm.

Wednesday April 8 - Loughrea Hotel & Spa, Galway- register for free here

Tuesday April 23 - The Horse and Jockey Hotel, Thurles- register for free here

Eoin Liston, a seven time All Ireland medalist, will be the Kerry GAA TILDA Ambassador for Monday night’s seminar spoke to GAA.ie about the importance of his involvement in the GAA throughout the years.

By Cian O’Connell

Last Saturday evening under the Austin Stack Park lights the value of sport, community, and conversation was underlined.

Eoin Liston, the decorated former Kerry star with seven All Ireland medals, got chatting with Bosco McDermott, part of the three in a row Galway winning team in the 1960s at the weekend's Allianz Football League Division encounter involving the two counties.

“I couldn't believe the enjoyment that you can still get from watching a match and discussing it,” Liston says. “Last Saturday night I met Bosco McDermott, who is 84. He is in fantastic shape and we had a lovely conversation for half an hour. It was worth going to the match even to meet him.”

Ultimately that is what the game is about according to Liston. “Absolutely, people need people,” Liston continues.

“The more people you meet in the day it is all good for you, the mental side anyway. It keeps you sharp and keeps you young. It also plays a huge part in the health of club members. That can only be a good thing.

“The important thing about next Monday night is the tips Dr Rose Anne Kenny is going to give, that will help people to get back involved, to lead healthier lives so that people can keep their independence. That they will still be able to travel and that they will have choices as they get older. People are living longer, she will help big time with the information she is going to give.”

Professor Rose Anne Kenny, TILDA, speaking during the How to Age Well: GAA and TILDA Partnership launch at Croke Park last year.
Professor Rose Anne Kenny, TILDA, speaking during the How to Age Well: GAA and TILDA Partnership launch at Croke Park last year.

Gaelic Football occupied a central role in Liston’s life. Friendships were forged, skills were learned on and off the field of play while social interaction was always crucial.

“I played from 8 years old to 40 and made an awful lot of friends out of it,” Liston recalls. “I think this is a great initiative they are getting involved in now, trying to help people to age well. I think it is brilliant because of the fact it (the GAA) reaches into every parish.

"There is such good research done, it is no good unless it gets out to the people. What better place than getting involved in the GAA.”

Being active is vital. Whether as a player, coach, or merely a supporter, Liston stresses how helpful the interaction is.

“If you are involved in a club, no matter what type of a club it is, there are huge benefits,” Liston remarks.

“The biggest benefit is you are meeting people and interacting. If you have relationships like that with fellow club members it will definitely help to keep you young. Even if you are just going to the matches, watching them, you can discuss them with people straightaway.”

Keeping busy and giving back to the community has been incredibly important for Liston since he retired from playing with Kerry and his club Beale.

“I gave eight years coaching and really enjoyed that, the interaction with the players and getting them to the right fitness level and motivated. I really enjoyed that and now just going to the matches gives me great enjoyment.”

Eoin Liston will be ambassador at the Kerry GAA TILDA seminar in the Rose Hotel Tralee on Monday February 10.

To find out more about the upcoming TILDA GAA events for 2020 please click here!

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