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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.

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Presentation on theme: "Managing Alcohol in the Club Teams - The hidden challenge for the coach John Leahy, Tipperary Hurler and Aileen Tohill, Ulster GAA."— Presentation transcript:

1 Managing Alcohol in the Club Teams - The hidden challenge for the coach John Leahy, Tipperary Hurler and Aileen Tohill, Ulster GAA

2 Contents Relationship between alcohol and sport New GAA research Role of the Coach Challenges Identifying signs Offering help

3 Alcohol and Sport Traditionally there has been a strong association between alcohol and sport –Sport can have a positive influence on adolescents on their use of alcohol and drugs compared to peers –However, being involved in sport as an adult may encourage greater intake of alcohol –Athletes involved in team sports may be at greater risk of excessive drinking than individual athletes

4 Alcohol and Sport Research has identified that alcohol is: –Commonly associated with team bonding behaviours –Frequently consumed in binges –Heavily associated with both win and lose scenarios –Used as a relief from stress

5 Alcohol and Sport

6 New Research Team Problems Caused by Alcohol & Other Drugs for GAA Coaches Brendan Murphy & Mark Gottsche, November 2010 347 GAA coaches questioned Responses sought around their opinions, experiences and attitudes Looks at the extent of the problem

7 Main findings 81% of coaches felt the use of alcohol and other drugs to be a ‘serious’ or ‘very serious’ problem in Ireland 52% felt a team they coached had been affected by a players use of alcohol or other drugs What do you think were the main ways teams had been affected?

8 Alcohol and Sport 1.Missing training 2.Under performing 3.Missing matches 4.Arriving under the influence 5.Disruptive 6.Injury as a result

9 Coach’s Influence Coaches can have a positive influence over their players by: –Being approachable/supportive –Building a sense of collective responsibility –Setting challenges –Educating around nutrition and hydration –Placing importance on rest and recovery –Playing attention to/supporting to injured players –Providing/acting as role models

10 Effects of Alcohol and Sporting Performance 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

11 Challenges for the Coach Loss of B vitamins - Alcohol robs the body of B-group vitamins which help repair body tissue after injury Effect on sports injuries - Alcohol increases the bleeding and swelling around soft tissue injuries (sprains, bruises and cuts) so they take longer to recover. 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.

12 Awareness of Alcohol & Substance Use Among Players 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

13 Early Intervention ‘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

14 Preparing for Brief Intervention Seek professional guidance Arrange a good time to meet Never meet on your own Have facts written down Show empathy

15 Early Intervention 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

16 Early Intervention 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

17 Early Intervention 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

18 Early Intervention If they do – you can reassure them you are here to offer support and if there is anything you want us to do we will support you? You can suggest do you want us to contact Treatment Services, Counsellor etc...

19 Early Intervention If they don’t say anything – you may have to suggest to them, ‘Do they think their drinking or substance use is causing them any concern?’ If they agree you can offer to support them.

20 Early Intervention If they don't agree with your views or not seeing their substance / alcohol as a problem – You cant do much more Just reassure them you are there if they ever need anything and you will be continuing to pick your team on training / game performance

21 Early Intervention But what you have done is pointed out to them how you see their life is planning out due to there use. This type of intervention will always be remembered

22 Early Intervention Having worked with people who end up with problems, they will always speak about how others tried to point out to them, that substance / alcohol use was a problem in there earlier days of use. If they had only listen then – is more often the line you will get

23 Challenges Drinking Culture Team Management acceptance to alcohol consumption Motivational circumstances of player Professional demands on Players Lack of Enjoyment from training & games Lack of expertise in the alcohol & Substance area GAA association with alcohol Companies

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