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Ruan Gaa Code Of Conduct

Core Values in Sport for Young People

The work of Ruan GAA Club is based on the following principles that will guide the development of sport for young people in the Club.  Young people’s experience of sport should be guided by what is best for the young person.  The stages of development and the ability of the young person should guide the types of coaching and game activity provided within the club.  Adults will be required to have a basic understanding of the needs of young people, including their physical, emotional and personal development.

Integrity in relationships

Adults interacting with young people in sport should do so with integrity and respect for the child.  There is a danger that sporting contexts can be used to exploit or undermine children.  All adult actions in sport should be guided by what is best for the child in the context of quality and open working relationships.  Verbal, physical, emotional or sexual abuse of any kind id unacceptable and will not be tolerated within our sport. 

Quality atmosphere and ethos

Sport for young people should be conducted in a safe, positive and encouraging atmosphere.  A child centred ethos will help to ensure that competition and specialisation are kept in their appropriate place. 


All children should be treated in an equitable and fair manner regardless of age, ability, sex, religion, social and ethnic background or political persuasion.  Children with special needs should be involved in sport activities in an integrated way, thus allowing them to participate to their potential alongside other children. 

Fair Play

Fair play is the guiding principle of the Code of Ethics and Good Conduct for Young People in Sport.

All children’s sport should be conducted in an atmosphere of fair play.  Ireland has contributed and is committed to the European Code of Sports Ethics, which defines fair play as ‘much more than playing within the rules’.  It incorporates the concepts of friendship, respect for others and always playing with the right spirit.  Fair play is defined as a way of thinking not just behaving.  It incorporates issues concerned with the elimination of opportunities, excessive commercialisation and corruption.  (European Sports Charter and Code of Ethics, Council of Europe, 1993) 


A balanced approach to competition can make a significant contribution to the development of your people, while at the same time providing fun, enjoyment and satisfaction.  However, competitive demands are often place too early on children which results in excessive levels of pressure on them.  This can contribute to a high level of drop out from sport.  Leaders should aim to put the welfare of the child first and competitive standards second.  A child centred approach will help to ensure that competition and specialisation are kept in their appropriate place.


Policy Statement

Ruan GAA Club

Ruan GAA Club is fully committed to safeguarding the well being of its members.  Every member in Ruan GAA Club should at all times, show respect and understanding for fellow members rights, safety and welfare and conduct themselves in a way that reflects the principles of Cumann Luthchleas Gael and the guidelines contained in the Code of Ethics and Good Conduct for Young People in Sport.

In Ruan GAA Club our first priority is the welfare of our young people and we are committed to providing an environment which will allow all participants to perform to the best of their ability, free from bullying and intimidation.


Dignity of Rights of Youth

It is important that all young players are valued and always treated with the highest level of respect.  Their personal dignity and physical integrity are paramount and participation in sport should enable them to have fun, make friends, and become better players.

Cumann Luthchleas Gael through the Ruan Hurling Club believe that a youth centred approach should be adopted by everyone involved in the promotion and development of Gaelic Games at underage level.  The GAA Coaching resources and activity programmes are firmly rooted in this philosophy and highlight the importance of participation, enjoyment and equality.  These are also structured to assist young people to value discipline and to strive to achieve full potential as they mature and develop.


Code of Conduct for Young People in Sport

   Ruan GAA Club wishes to provide the best possible environment for all young people involved in our games.  Young people deserve to be given enjoyable, safe sporting opportunities, free from abuse of any kind.  These players have rights, which must be respected, and responsibilities that they themselves must accept.  Young people should realise that they have responsibilities to treat other players and sports leaders with fairness and respect.


Young players are entitled to:

  • Be safe and to feel safe.

  • Be listened to and be believed.

  • Be believed.

  • Be treated with dignity, sensitivity and respect.

  • Have a voice in the club.

  • Participate on an equal basis.

  • Have fun and enjoy sport.

  • Experience competition at a level at which they feel comfortable.

  • Make legitimate complaints and have them dealt with.

  • Get help against bullies.

  • Say NO in situations which appear threatening.

  • To protect their own bodies and refuse inappropriate touches.

  • Confidentiality.

Young players should always:

  • Treat all coaches, managers, selectors, club and match officials with respect and obey by their decision.

  • Play fairly at all times, do their best and enjoy themselves.

  • Respect team members, even when things go wrong.

  • Respect opponents, be gracious in defeat, shake hands.

  • Abide by the rules set down by team managers when travelling to away events.

  • Behave in a manner that avoids bringing the sport of Gaelic Games and Ruan Hurling Club into disrepute.

  • Talk to Child Liaison Officer if they have any problems.

  • Respect Club grounds and property and ensure that it is not damaged.

  • Accept opponent’s apologies when given.

Young players should never:

  • Use unfair or bullying tactics to gain advantage on or off the field.

  • Cheat.

  • Use violence or physical contact that it not allowed within the rules.

  • Shout or argue with match or club officials, team mates, opponents, coaches or selectors.

  • Harm team members, opponents or their property.

  • Bully or use bullying tactics to isolate another player.

  • Take banned substances.

  • Keep secrets, especially if they have caused harm.

  • Tell lies about adults/young people.

  • Spread rumours or malicious gossip about another player or adult.

  • Use cameras, camera phones, anywhere in the vicinity of changing rooms.

    • Guidelines for Parents/Guardians

Ruan hurling club is committed to providing a safe and fair environment for all juvenile players.  Our first priority is the welfare of young players and we are committed to providing an environment, which will allow participants to perform to their best ability free from bullying and intimidation.  Parents and Guardians have an important role to play in assisting young people to adopt positive attitudes and encouraging them to maintain an active involvement in the game of hurling.  They should not attempt to meet their own needs for success and achievement through their children’s participation in Gaelic games.  The Club believes that parents/guardians should:

  • Be a role model for your child and maintain the highest standards of conduct when interacting with children, other parents, with officials and organisers.

  • Encourage your child to play by the rules.  Teach your child that honest endeavour is as important as winning and do all you can to encourage good sportsmanship.

  • Always behave responsibly on the sidelines and do not seek to unfairly affect the game or the players on the field.  If you are not directly involved with an individual team as a coach/mentor etc. do not enter dressing rooms prior to or during games.

  • Take care not to expose any young player, intentionally or unintentionally, to embarrassment or disparagement by the use of flippant or sarcastic remarks.

  • Always recognise the value and importance of the volunteers who provide sporting/recreational opportunities for your child.  Do not publicly question the judgement of competition organisers.  Respect all officiating match officials and team management.

  • Ensure that your child is safely attired e.g. helmets are fitting properly and correctly fastened, all boots have laces tied and that hurleys are the appropriate weight/length for the players height and size.  Helmets must be worn at all times i.e. for the duration of drills as well as matches.  (It is now compulsory for all under-age players to wear helmets.).

  • Ensure that your child is collected promptly after training and matches and is not allowed to loiter within the confines of the Club premises or elsewhere – remember that this is essential in the interest of the overall safety of the child.

  • Respect referees, coaches, organisers and other players.

  • Do not publicly question the judgement or honesty of referees, coaches or organisers.

  • Set a good example by applauding good play on both sides.  Encourage mutual respect for team mates and the opposition.

  • Parents should support all efforts to remove abusive behaviour and bullying in all its forms.

  • Ensure that your child is fully aware of the contents of the Code of Ethics & Good Conduct for Young People in Ruan hurling Club, particularly the section dealing with the code of conduct for Young Players.



  • Do show approval for effort, not just results.

  • Do try to make words and actions match.

  • Do attend games on a regular basis and volunteer to assist in the organisation of the Club.

  • Do give advice on the importance of maintaining a balanced lifestyle.

  • Do listen to what young people have to say.

  • Do try to appreciate the strength of your persons emotions, positive or negative.

  • Do realise the power of example.



  • Don’t exert undue pressure on young people.

  • Don’t say one thing and do another.

  • Don’t make promises you cannot keep.

  • Don’t ask “how much did you score/win or lose by”

  • Don’t just show approval when the team wins.

  • Don’t criticise playing performances – seek to identify areas where improvements can be made.

All our coaches in Ruan Hurling Club are club members, fully qualified and garda vetted .

A full copy of the Code of Ethics & Good Conduct Policy is accessible on the club website or available on request from any Ruan GAA club officer.