Gaelic Football can be summarized as a blend of soccer, rugby and basketball.
Gaelic Football can be summarized as a blend of soccer, rugby and basketball. It predates all of these games and is one of the oldest sports still played today. In essence the sport is a fast paced field game requiring skill, speed, intelligence, stamina, strength and passion. Don’t worry if you’re lacking in any of these, we’ll have no problem teaching you. Gaelic Football is a sport that is open to anybody, no matter what your skill set is.
Gaelic Football is Ireland’s favorite sport, attracting more players than soccer and rugby. Despite its amateur status, at all levels of the game, Gaelic Football matches can attract up to 85,000 supporters, as well as television coverage in Ireland and abroad.
The ball used in Gaelic Football, is similar in size to a soccer ball, but is a lot heavier and harder. The game is played on a field measuring 137m x 82m, with goal posts very similar in shape to rugby posts. The difference in the posts is that the cross bar is lower, and we play with a goalkeeper, similar to soccer.
The ball can be carried in the hand for up to four steps, and then must either be passed, bounced or solo-ed (an action of kicking the ball to yourself). Passes can be made by kicking or hand-passing (a striking motion with the hand or the fist). The ball can never be thrown. In the Men’s game the ball may not be touched with the hand when it is on the ground. You must pick the ball up by chipping it into the hands with your foot. The Ladies game has removed this requirement.
The game is played over two halves for a duration of 70 minutes. Two opposing teams of 15 players each, line out with 1 goalkeeper, 6 defenders, 2 midfielders and 6 forwards. Scoring consists of putting the ball over the crossbar for 1 point, or below the crossbar into the net for a goal, which is worth 3 points.
YouTube has a number of great Gaelic Football videos, just search on "GAA" or "Gaelic Football". Below we have included a three part serious entitled “What is Gaelic Football”. We highly recommend that you take a look at these, to get the basic rules of the game. The videos will also show you all the skills that you will be using over the summer.
What is Gaelic Football: