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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.
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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