Official Connacht GAA Website

Official Website of Connacht GAA

U-9 Training

U-9 training

Stage 3. The start of Us (Learning to play together)
Technical Football


–        Crouch Lift

–        Hook Kick

–        Near hand tackle

–        Checking

–        Block down

–        High Catch



–        punt kick

–        Catching

–        hand pass



–        Roll and job lift on the move

–        Hand pass

–        One handed catch

–        Overhead catch


–        Shooting

–        Strike from hand

–        Strike from hand, with short grip


–        Solo the ball


–        Shadowing/ marking

–        Front block

–        Ground block

–        Hooking

·       All skills should be progressed to be performed on the move but only if players are efficient in stationary stage.

·       Emphasis of bilateral development of all skills also very important

Physical Refine the FUNdamentals

Strong focus on running technique and sprint technique to help work on speed


Tactical Introduce the decision-making process, when and where to execute each skill both

on and off the ball.

Team play Become aware of basic positional roles.

Identify support positions (in front, beside and behind).

Conditioned games are key for developing focus on specific techniques.

Games should be 5v5 to a max 9v9.

Psycho/social Concentration and focus, the ability to work for slightly extended periods of time without losing quality.

Basic goal setting with coach, practicing at home and developing own skills and physical aspects, coaches to give homework.

Coaching Style Direct style mainly, Trying to create a mastery climate to help develop self-efficacy and intrinsic motivation.

They usually enjoy being asked questions so this should give the coach plenty of

opportunity to check for understanding.

Player Characteristics Still shortened attention span, so training sessions need to move quite quickly

Willingness to learn and achieve – especially within a small team context Needs consistency in rules, standards and fairness

Equipment Football/ Sliotar (Quick touch) one per player, cones, Bibs, portable goals/agility



Recommended session structure: (1 hr)

  • Warm-up (10 mins)

Generic warm up for all, fun game for general mobilization and pulse raisers (e.g. Bulldog, tail- tag, stuck in the mud).

  • 4 stations (7 mins each)

Focus should be on skill development with a refinement of the FMS 3 skill development stations with 1 FMS station

  • Games (22 mins)

10 minutes of games conditioned to work on skills being taught in stations. (focus should be on the theme of the skills section. If the focus was dispossession and defending, let players know you will reward an extra point for their team upon a successful block, hook, interception).

12 minutes to follow go games model (see appendix X). No’s 5 v 5 to a max 9 v 9


Top Tips:

  • Coach: Player Ratio 1:7
  • Being organized and having planned ahead are key
  • Number of ball contacts should be really high so group numbers should be small within each station (max of 3 per group when doing drills) Can set up multiples of same drill within a station if required depending on numbers.
  • Be enthusiastic to create a sense of fun and enthusiasm when playing GAA

Sample drills and activities can be got at following websites/pages:

Book: Give us a game. Gerard O’Connor

U-9 Training Section