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A course aimed at introducing coaches to Gaelic games will increase the number and quality of coaches involved in developing players across the GAA, LGFA and Camogie Association and make it easier for them to acquire coaching credentials.
In a significant step, this collaborative project has produced a coach education programme which will ensure that beginner coaches in Gaelic games do not need to take code specific introduction courses.
This new course will be shared cross each of the three Associations and will, for the first time, ensure that beginner coaches of any of our codes come together and engage in a common programme. Coaches operating in clubs that have different codes, particularly One Club model clubs, now can take one coaching course, which is a huge benefit to our volunteer coaches.
Since 2019 the three Gaelic games Associations have worked closely together to develop this new common Introduction to Coaching Gaelic Games or ICGG Award.
Launching this new course today at Croke Park, the three Associations believe that this approach will ensure that beginner coaches, regardless of their code of choice, will learn from and share with each other and assist their coach development.
This course has been designed to be more interactive and practical than previous introductory courses, with a significant emphasis on coaches learning by doing.
Last year 300 coach developers, from across the three Associations, took part in collaborative upskilling events in preparation for the ICGG programme delivery in 2022 – with a start date to be agreed when pandemic restrictions allow.
The ICGG Award course has been designed to support new coaches develop a solid foundation of knowledge, skills, competencies, and values for coaching the child, youth or adult playing population.
The Introduction to Coaching Gaelic Games award is structured around three key elements:
- The Coach | ‘Being a Coach’, ‘How to Coach’, and ‘Preparation for Planning’.
- The Player | ‘Who are you coaching?’. Whether they are child, youth or adult players, male or female and address the need to be inclusive.
- The Game | a focus on movement for Gaelic games, skill development and games.
This programme will provide coaches with awareness, knowledge and experiences related to:
- Why do you Coach? | Each coach is an individual, and each will bring their own skills and characteristics to our games.
- How do you Coach? | A set of skills and behaviours which coaches can use in games and training sessions
- What do you Coach? | The games and developmental activities that can be used by coaches, and how to structure sessions to hone the skills of players
- Who do you Coach? | The specific players that a coach has within their team/group; looking at age, stages of the player pathway they are at, the importance of inclusivity and how it impacts upon their coaching
Upon completion of this Award, coaches can then choose learning and development opportunities specific to them, their needs, and abilities with specific reference to the stage of the player pathway (see attached graphic) that they coach.
Welcoming this new ICGG award;
Uachtarán CLG, Larry McCarthy said: “Working in partnership with the LGFA and the Camogie Association, I believe that this new introductory coaching to Gaelic games course will have a profound effect on our volunteer coaches. This streamlined and collaborative approach will allow new coaches to concentrate on how to coach and how to coach well and will allow them to maximise their time and the impact they have in developing players. Tús maith leath na hoibre, we are told, and this can put Gaelic games on a strong footing.”
Uachtarán of the Camogie Association, Hilda Breslin said: “We are delighted to be involved in the development of the first collaborated coaching programme within the Gaelic games family. This collaboration will provide prospective coaches within the Gaelic games Associations to come together and learn the fundamentals in a supportive and inclusive environment. We are excited for the future success that this collaboration will bring, and I thank my colleagues in the GAA and LGFA for their continued support in the development of this programme”.
Speaking on behalf of the LGFA, President Mícheál Naughton said: “The launch of the Introduction to Coaching Gaelic Games is another major collaborative project between the Ladies Gaelic Football Association, the GAA and the Camogie Association. This is a very important step for the provision of coach education at grassroots level and ensuring courses are more accessible at local level. The benefits will be evident for clubs all over the world, with this single course now being provided for coaches regardless of the code they are coaching, rather than having to attend multiple events. We would like to thank everyone involved for the hard work in bringing this to fruition and we look forward to getting coach developers active across the country, and beyond.”