Track & Field

Cross Country Camps: Crucial to Development of Distance Running in Ireland

Yesterday saw the launch of a new initiative by Athletics Ireland. The Regional High Performance Squads have been set up in conjunction with NI Athletics and will start in September. This new initiative is being led by Steve Macklin National Junior Endurance Coach Athletics Ireland, Pat Ryan Director of Development Athletics Ireland, Tom Crick Director of Coaching and Talent Development Athletics NI and a team of regional endurance coaches with the aim of development endurance running in the country.

A similar model has been running in Munster over the last few years and has proved to be successful. The benefits of the Regional Endurance Camps include

-Weekend Training Camps for athletes & their personal coaches
-Educational workshops incorporating key areas such as S&C, Sports Psychology, Nutrition & Hydration, Planning, Goal Setting, Lifestyle, Biomechanics
-A strong training emphasis at these camps with athletes working together in groups
-A chance for personal coaches and lead coaches to interact and share training ideas
-Regular communication re development & high performance initiatives and competitions
-Mentoring support for personal coaches through the lead coaches & National Junior Endurance Coach

The following are the dates & venues for the first set of camps:

Sep 18th-20th Munster Camp Banna Beach Co Kerry
Sep 18th-20th Connaught Camp Ballina Co Mayo
Sep 25th-27th Ulster/NI Camp Gortin Glen Forest Park Omagh Co Tyrone
Sep 25th-27th Leinster Camp Curracloe Beach Co Wexford

The camps in Munster have been attended by the likes of Louise Shanahan, Kevin Mulcaire and Sean Tobin in the past. The idea behind these camps is not only to help the athletes train, it is also to educate athletes and mentor coaches, all with the goal of developing cross country and endurance running in Ireland

Selected Athletes can be seen here

Criteria for Selection can be found here

Read more here

Any queries should be directed to the National Junior Endurance Coach Steve Macklin at 0876335565 or

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Ronan Duggan

Ronan Duggan

Ronan Duggan is an athlete, coach, athletics fan and, most importantly, was once named Bandon AFC's under-12 Player of the Year. He was once a promising athlete but is now a promising coach, teacher and part-time athletics writer/broadcaster. While an 800m runner himself, Ronan has coached everything from pole vault to 10km with varying levels of bluffing. He has regularly been threatening to do something for years but is yet to deliver. He is regarded as our expert on the American running scene, though has yet, to prove his knowledge in this realm.

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