The benefit of a partnership with the leading lights in gaelic games is never more apparent than in the days of autumn when All Ireland titles are being won and spoken of in glowing terms.
Specialist sportswear brand Skins is striking while the conversation is bubbling by launching a Skins GAA School based at Johnstown House in Meath where young players between 13 and 18 from across the country can enhance their skills in football and learn more about the life of a top inter county player from those who are just that at present.
The brand has partnerships with Dublin, Kerry, Tyrone and Kilkenny and has called on All Ireland winners Cian O’Sullivan, Michael Fennelly, Sean Kavanagh and Darran O’Sullivan to run the clinics.
The school has been designed to give competition winners a real insight into the life of an inter county player and will include a coaching clinic, strength and conditioning session, sports nutrition seminar, sports performance lecture and an overnight stay in the illustrious surroundings of Johnstown House which has been home to the Irish rugby team and Sunderland FC in recent years.
“The GAA School is another demonstration of our long term commitment to the GAA and the overall GAA market in Ireland where we already support a number of top inter county teams including recent All Ireland football winners Dublin,” said Skins General Manager for the UK & Ireland David Ling launching the event on Monday at the Gibson Hotel.
“At Skins we pride ourselves on the technical and performance enhancing benefits of our products and we are determined that the Skins GAA School will reflect these characteristics and give the winners a real insight into what is required to succeed at the top level”.
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The promotion invites entry through facebook which is a good way of contacting the target market though entry of details by minors is a thorny subject and the marketing of product directly will need to be managed very carefully.
The school is planned to run for one day initially, on Saturday 22nd February.
There is never a perfect time to run promotions but the same weekend in 2013 was the opening round of fixtures for the Allianz National Hurling League and is also at the start of the juvenile season when many of the potential candidates will be called upon to play for their own clubs.
Of course the opportunity to improve and learn should never be passed over but the clash of demands on young players is becoming ever more challenging and it is hoped that the days learning will potentially cover how to cope with this as well as the other areas.