Go For Life Programme
Go for Life is the national programme for sport and physical activity for older people. The aim of Go for Life is to involve more older adults in all aspects of sport and physical activity more often. The thrust of the programme is to empower and enable older people by reaching out to active retirement associations, senior citizens groups, ICA guilds, day care and community centres around the country, to ensure that more older people are more active, more often.
Go for Life is an Age & Opportunity initiative funded by the Irish Sports Council. The Go for Life team at Age and Opportunity administers the Go for Life programme, working in partnership with the Health Service Executive, each area of which has a Go for Life Co-ordinator, and the Local Sports Partnerships (LSPs). There are many different elements to the Go for Life programme.
Physical Activity Leaders Workshops
Physical Activity Leaders (PALs) organise physical activities for older adults. PALs are often older people themselves, who belong to a local group, for example, an active retirement association or an ICA guild, that includes older people among its members. Some PALs are Activity Organisers working in day care centres.
Each month from September to June, Go for Life tutors deliver workshops all around the country.
How do you become a PAL?
To become a PAL, you must attend the Physical Activity Leaders workshops, a series of eight workshops developed by the Go for Life team. These workshops aim to enable the participants to plan and lead health-enhancing physical activity sessions for older people. The workshops are a combination of theory and practical ideas, serving to transfer skills and knowledge to the participants to enable them to lead activities with their own groups.
Each workshop is approx. 5 hours long and the series of workshops are organised over a number of weeks in a given area. The Go for Life team work with co-ordinators in each Health Services Executive area and the Local Sports Partnerships to organise workshops at local level.
Go For Life Games
The Go for Life Games is a celebration of physical activity. The games are run in partnership with Local Sports Partnerships and the HSE.
The first games were held in June 2012 involving seven counties. In 2013 this increased to thirteen counties, with the intention of having every county represented by 2015. We plan to grow the games into one of Ireland’s significant amateur multi-sporting events.
Some counties run heats to select teams while others support groups to meet and practice locally in advance of the day.
Sports played during the Games
The Games, adapted by Go For Life, involve three sports – Lobbers, Flisk and Skiddles. The emphasis of the Games is on participation and fun. They are intended to be played in a non competitive way. Participants are encouraged to umpire their own games.
You can read or download the Games rules here
‘Spirit of the Games’ Awards
The Games also recognise people who are adding to the fun and participation on the day, supporting others to take part or helping out. Each year, a number of people come away with a ‘Spirit of the Games’ award, which values the role they played in the overall success of the day. Go for Life is about joining in and taking part, and while we reward a county for scoring points, we reward individuals for making this one of the most relaxed and fun days in Ireland’s sporting calendar.
The Go for Life Games are still growing and, over the next few years, we plan to grow the Games into one of Ireland’s significant amateur multi-sporting events.
Go For Life Guides on how to organise a Friendly, a Challenge or a League
If you are planning to take part in the Go For Life Games and prior to that you would like to run some physical activities in order to get your group in shape, take a look at our guides how to run a Friendly, a Challenge or aLeague.
For further information http://ageandopportunity.ie/