Gaelic Football is a sport carried from Ireland across the world by Irish expats. It started as a way for Irish people to connect overseas but in recent years team are forming of completely non-Irish players. In Europe I played a Parisian women’s team that was all French, on the field you hear multiple languages and see different ethnicities. Training is often once or twice a week with games organised within the club or with nearby teams, then championships are organised by clubs where players travel in teams to one location for a full-day of mini-games, leading to medals and trophies for the top performing men and women’s teams.
It’s a great sport to join whoever you are, wherever you are! So check Facebook and ‘”YOUR CITY” GAA’ in search engines and you may find great new friends.
What do I need to play?
- Standard football boots
- General sports clothing
- Gloves, ideally with rubber grips on the fingers
- Football socks
- Gum shield
- Water bottle
That’s it! You can even play in regular trainers if you don’t mind slipping and sliding across the potentially muddy grass. Also for some countries the teams train indoors due to the cold and then regular trainers are worn. So its not a huge expense to join, no racket, bat or stick needed.
Are newcomers welcome?
In all cities and countries new players are more than welcome. I’m Irish and have never played the sport at home, so coming to Denmark was my first experience playing an Irish sport. It’s not a rare occurrence that people from Irish become more Irish when they leave. Where I am there are friends of Irish playing from Germany, France, Australia, England and Lithuania.
Is it just sport?
This depends club to club but often there are pub quizzes, Halloween parties, Christmas parties and summer BBQs organised. It’s a social club for all ages and all levels of fitness.