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National Coaching & Referee Tutor In-Service

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The annual National LGFA Coach and Referee Tutor In-Service took place in the impressive surroundings of Le Cheile Community Centre in Donnycarney on Saturday 22nd November with over 30 tutors in attendance on the day.

Positivity was the aim of the day with the theme for this year’s tutor in-service focusing on personal tutor development and how tutors can continue to do the best job possible when delivering the LGFA Coach and Referee Education programmes.

Paula Prunty, National Ladies Football Development Manager, commenced proceedings by welcoming everyone to the in-service in particular our tutor colleagues that travelled all the way from Europe. In addition, Paula thanked everyone for their commitment throughout the year and highlighted that the positive feedback received in relation to our courses is a direct result of the quality personnel we have within the LGFA tutor group. She also welcomed our new tutors in training, Natalie Flanagan and Teresa Molohan.

After a well received and laugh filled ice breaker delivered by Irene Hogan and Nora Aherne a brief presentation was given all tutors showing an overview of the year in relation to the roll out of coach and referee education courses across the Country and further afield. The last two years has seen many of the LGFA programmes being reviewed and new procedures put in place and as a result there has been a significant increase on the uptake of the various programmes around the Country.  The LGFA coach and referee education programmes are not only having an impact on the ground in Ireland but also in far afield places such as all over Europe and beyond.

The first Guest Speaker of the day was Maria Lynch from Motivated Joyful Living. Maria has 20 years of commercial (group and individual) coaching, mentoring and training experience. She works on all aspects of confidence building and getting people to trust in their own ability,raise awareness of what you are good at and clarity on what you want. Maria looked at the importance of connecting with self, fellow tutors and potential audience and the vital role this plays in delivering a high quality programme. Maria brought the group through various stress management techniques, getting tutors to expand their minds and be visually aware of their surroundings as well as importance of building a rapport and get along with others in an understanding manner. Maria’s presentation was thought provoking and got tutors to reflect on how their mood or emotional state can potentially affect others they come in contact with at their courses.

Maria was followed by our second guest speaker of the day, Sean Dempsey. Sean is a current GAA Tutor Trainer and has built up a lot of experience from his time as a player playing at the highest level with Laois, coaching with many ladies and mens football underage and Senior Inter County Teams and as a GAA Tutor. Sean focused on what motivates a tutor to do the best job possible. Sean got the tutors to look back at what were the main triggers for getting involved in tutoring in the first place and how a tutor should constantly strive to be the best they can be. Sean highlighted the important role tutors have and that the potential impact they have on the ground cannot be underestimated.  Sean wrapped up his presentation with a picture of a horse drawn carriage with the players in the carriage, the carriage being led by the coach but it was the tutor who was out in front pulling the horses, the carriage with the coaches and players on board and without him/her then the whole system would fall apart. It was a fitting way to wrap up the whole day!

As one can see the day was totally about the HOW of tutoring rather than the WHAT. The LGFA Coach and Referee Programme content is of high quality but it is the tutor that creates the correct, positive, safe learning environment for the course participant to process that content in the right way and change behaviour.

Roll on 2015…..

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