The New Irish/Na Nua-Éireannaigh: Give Irish a sporting chance
2019-01-14 12:38:02 -


By Jessica Ní Mháirtín


If you’re ringing in the New Year with a resolution to be fit and healthy, why not combine your new fitness lifestyle with a new-found love for the Irish language?

Since it first began in 2012, Óga Yoga has provided a service to those who wish to improve and learn Irish through a calm and relaxed environment while focused on building strength both mentally and physically.

Óga Yoga caters for people of all ages and their annual calendar also includes a summer programme. They have specially designed classes to cater for secondary and primary schools.

Abigail Gillen (15) said that both she and her sister Nicole (14) took part in a yoga challenge during Seachtain na Gaeilge last year and brought some of their friends together in a group session to encourage them to speak Irish.

“Irish shouldn’t just be about learning it in a classroom. There are many other ways to learn languages, fun ways at that,” Abigail said. “We used the instructions from Twigín on the RTÉjr website to do this group session and it was so much fun. It was more based on having fun and subconsciously learning the language than our not-so-refined yoga capabilities.”

These classes are hugely beneficial to anyone that wishes to learn Irish as it is a practical learning experience in which you’d learn the Irish for body parts and keywords surrounding directional awareness.

To find out more information about Óga Yoga and their classes you can visit their Facebook page or their website at

If yoga isn’t your thing, and you’re looking for something a bit more fast-paced, perhaps Na Gaeil Óga in Dublin’s Phoenix Park is more in your lane.

Na Gaeil Óga are an established and growing Irish-speaking sports team with many achievements across the board in different competitions such as youths, men’s and women’s football, and hurling and camogie respectively.

Established in 2010, Na Gaeil Óga have built their own Irish-speaking community outside the commonly known Gaeltachts and provide a specific network to those who wish to either teach their children about the Irish culture, sports and language, or to learn it themselves.

The club have welcomed many internationals over the years and they are open to more who have an interest in the language, sport and having the craic.

With the plans for their new clubhouse underway in Lucan, west Dublin, Na Gaeil Óga are hoping to build a home for this flourishing squad so they can nurture their grassroots.

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