Gaelic games are the core of the Washington DC Gaels. We field teams in both hurling and football in both men's and women's codes, playing within the Mid-Atlantic division against teams in Baltimore, Richmond, and Coastal Virginia.
Men's Gaelic Football
Gaelic football can be described as a blend of rugby, soccer, and volleyball. It's played on the same size field as hurling but with a hard round ball similar to volleyball. You can move the ball by carrying it up to four steps, kicking it, or striking it with your hand.
Players may not pick up the ball with their hands. The ball must be lifted off the ground with your feet. Like in hurling, players score by striking the ball into the goal for three points or hitting it over the goal for one point. Players can shoulder-check their opponent but hits from the front or behind are not allowed.
Still baffled by the idea? Watch a video of it here.
Team history: As our club's first team, men's football has the longest history in our club. They took home the national championship titles in 1998 and 2001.
Coach/Coordinator: Rory Coffey
Ladies Gaelic Football
By now, you've guessed that ladies' football is about the same as Gaelic football, and you would be correct. Players use a ball like a hard volleyball to score points (above the crossbar) and goals (in the net). Like in men's football, players can carry it for a few steps but then must bounce it off the ground or their instep to carry the ball further down the pitch.
Need more clarity on the subject? Watch a video of it here.
Team history: Our ladies' football squad was the second team formed in 1992 and won a national championship in 2008.
Coach/Coordinator: Rebecca Levetzow
For those that have neither seen nor heard of hurling, it can best be explained as a blend of lacrosse and field hockey. Played by teams of fifteen on a pitch nearly twice the size of a football field, players use a stick with a flat end for striking to hit a small leather ball called a sliotar.
Players must use the stick to lift the ball off the ground, then can carry it for a few steps before they have to pass it. You can pass with either the stick or by smacking the ball with the palm, which is called hand passing. Players score by firing the ball into the net past a keeper for three points or over the uprights above the goal for one point. Still doesn't make much sense? Watch a video of it here.
Team history: Our men's hurling team was founded in 2004 and has won national championships in 2005, 2006, and 2014, as well as even more divisional trophies!
Coach/Coordinator: Paddy McCabe
Camogie is similar to hurling but is played by women. Using a stick with a flat end, players strike the ball through the posts for one point or into a net past the keeper for three points. Camogie players must use the stick to raise the ball off the ground and then can pass it with the stick or strike it with their palm. A few minor differences from the men's game include that women can drop their hurls when they hand pass and can handpass to score. Is Camogie still a confusing concept? Watch a video of it here.
Team history: Our camogie team was formed in 1999 and won national championship titles in 2004 and 2010.
Coach/Coordinator: Rosemary Reilly