Keep'er Fit

Gary Wallace

Benefit from doing other things

Playing basketball in the off-season can help Gaelic footballers improve their skills.

Playing basketball in the off-season can help Gaelic footballers improve their skills.

Are you sick and tired of the same exercise routine or have you been forced to stop some activities because of the weather?

But instead of just stopping why not change it up a little?


For a lot of Gaelic footballers this will be their off season (whatever that is with a year long competitive season for a good few teams not to mention the county players!) and the majority of them will be looking to hit the gym, pile on the muscle and work on the areas that need built on from last year.

But it doesn’t have to stop there in terms of health and fitness, why not play another sport either competitively or recreationally.

I played a game of basketball with of few of my team mates as an extra training session a few weeks ago, now I was no Michael Jordan but I really enjoyed it.

It was made even more enjoyable by watching some of my team mates who fancied themselves as b’ballers but were anything but.

The whole point was to have fun but when you break it down there was so much more to take away in terms of relating it to my sport. Firstly, you have the high number of sprints you carry out.

Then there is the hand eye co-ordination, time of jump and tackle, communication, team work and so on and so on.

What was supposed to be a bit of fun really helped us towards our goal as improving as Gaelic footballers.

It's now the off season for most Gaelic footballers.

It’s now the off season for most Gaelic footballers.

Can you think of anything different you can add or replace in your training to help you reach your goals? It doesn’t have to have a direct effect –  if it makes you feel good and has a positive effect on your body then go for it.

I know that Cappagh Cycling Club has adapted their training to suit the weather.

Firstly, in the dark evenings they used Youth Sport Omagh and cycled around the track doing different workouts and little challenges each week.

I noticed that they seemed to attract a few extra bodies as the weeks went on, maybe due to the fact it’s a safer environment for people to
cycle in groups rather than on the road.

Now that the track is too slippy to cycle on they decided to set up a walking/running group which meets every Tuesday at the Cappagh Parish Hall from 6.30pm.

Again, this type of training from the cycling club has not only helped maintain the fitness levels of the cyclists but it has also attracted other people from the community to come along and walk or run in the safety and enjoyment with other people.

These cyclists will be able to start their season on the bike in a better position if they didn’t do anything from the last race or event of the year.

All this took was a little thinking outside the box and someone to take the lead. If you’re bored of your training or the weather is having an effect on what you can and cannot do, then mix it up.

Ask friends or work colleagues to join you, even if it’s just for an evening walk or to do the Park Run every Saturday morning or you could getting a five a-side team together or try wrestling on a Thursday night in Omagh Leisure Centre.

There is so much out there you can do rather than just keep repeating what you’re doing and not seeing any progression.

As Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. I would listen to him he was a smart guy!

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We have all been told at some stage in our lives “make sure and eat your vegetables”.