Managing Alcohol in the Club Teams - The hidden challenge for the coach . John Leahy, Tipperary Hurler and Aileen Tohill, Ulster GAA. Contents. Relationship between alcohol and sport New GAA research Role of the Coach Challenges Identifying signs Offering help. Alcohol and Sport.
John Leahy, Tipperary Hurler and Aileen Tohill, Ulster GAA
Team Problems Caused by Alcohol & Other Drugs for GAA Coaches
Brendan Murphy & Mark Gottsche, November 2010
What do you think were the main ways teams had been affected?
Reduced Endurance - Alcohol reduces the body’s ability to produce glucose, leading to less energy and less endurance capacity.
Greater risk of cramp - Alcohol left in your system after a few drinks the night before contributes to a bigger build up of lactic acid.
Dehydration - Alcohol is a diuretic, making you use extra fluid on top of the normal during exercise – putting you a greater risk of dehydration
Effect on sports injuries - Alcohol increases the bleeding and swelling around soft tissue injuries (sprains, bruises and cuts) so they take longer to recover.
Loss of B vitamins - Alcohol robs the body of B-group vitamins which help repair body tissue after injury
Slower reaction times - The relaxant properties of alcohol affect the central nervous system and slow down information processing – affecting reactions, co-ordination, accuracy and balance.
Starting to argue with referee during games
Starting to give back chat when are given instructions during games
Making excuses when missing training & games
Being injured more regularly
‘Team Managerment / Coaches can play an important part in minimising the damage alcohol / substance use can have on players’
Highlighting the problem regarding players drinking should never be completed in front of other team members
Focus on the following:
Ask how his/her feels about the training?
Ask how his/her own performance is going?
Discuss his/her training attendance
Discuss his/her training & playing performance
Discuss his/her attitude towards training, games, etc
Here you can point out how you see his/hers attitude has changed
Before they may have been encouraging & supportive of team mates
All management attended the meeting & support each other
Ask the Question:
Is there anything we can do, to support you?
They may tell you themselves at this stage that alcohol / substance use is an issue
‘Do they think their drinking or substance use is causing them any concern?’
You cant do much more