OUTGOING Limerick hurling manager Donal O’Grady has identified a programme of Core Strength Development as essential to progress in 2012.
O’Grady submitted an extensive end of year report to the executive officers of Limerick GAA where he highlighted the need for immediate work on the physical conditioning of the Limerick players if they are to advance to the next level.
The report was read to club delegates by secretary Mike O’Riordan at this week’s September monthly meeting of the County Board.
O’Grady recommend: ‘a 12-week weight programme from October 1 with a specialised weights coach in preparation for the new season’.
He outlined: ‘the first four weeks could be managed collectively and the next eight on smaller group as per GAA guidelines”.
He recommended: ‘testing after four week periods’.
In the report he recalled testing the physical fitness of the panel at the outset of last season and finding ‘a deficiency in the area’.
Of course the majority of the panel were not involved in inter-county hurling the previous year so it was no surprise that fitness levels were below the necessary level.
Under the guidance of physical trainer Jerry Wallace targets were set and ‘players were tested on four occasions throughout the season and given feedback’.
He departed inter-county manager reported that ‘no medical records were kept in 2010’ and that this was now rectified.
“They are available to incoming manager and are a very important area of preparation,” he said.
Another area that O’Grady pinpointed was diet and nutrition.
“I carried out a survey over a seven day period,” reported O’Grady, who praised the honestly of the players for their responses.
“Most of the players dietary habits were poor,” he said.
“A programme of eduction was carried out and constantly reinforced and the players were constantly monitored throughout the season.”
Overall O’Grady report on the season was positive.
“Over the years rumours have abounded about the lack of discipline, various cultures and cliques within the Limerick senior hurlers and I am only too glad to explode those myths,” he said.
“The players were very professional from the outset and always committed to Limerick’s cause.”
He explained that outside of challenge games and league and championship matches, the panel had undertaken 62 ‘field coaching sessions’.
There was praise for all members of the back room team and county board as well as the facilities in Mick Neville Park in Rathkeale.
“The selection committee worked very well together - all personalities work hard for betterment of Limerick hurling,” he said, identifying the work of trainer Jerry Wallace for special praise.