Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 19 April 2014

Lynette paints stark picture of burn-out problem

GAA President Nickey Brennan has issued a warning to all units within the association to treat player burn-out with the utmost seriousness.

Brennan's call comes in the wake of stark evidence provided by former Dublin All Ireland winner Dr Pat O'Neill and leading Tyrone ladies player Lynette Hughes.

Both produced strong presentations at a Croke Park forum that underlined the dangers young players in particular face from the burn-out factor.

"If you had seen the nature of some of the injuries highlighted by Dr Pat and Lynette, it would certainly have set you thinking. Anyone who believes that burn-out is something of a myth should think again. It is a real danger and the fall-out can last for a long time," said Brennan.

He has urged clubs to weigh up their options carefully in their use of young players at various levels and stressed that particular attention should be paid to any of the symptoms of burn-out.

Lynette Hughes has already compiled a report on her detailed PHD research into the growing problem of burn-out.

Lynette, who works at the Sport and Exercise Research Unit at the University of Ulster, pointed out that over-training can be a grave danger.

"Aches and tiredness then become more extreme and these translate into burn-out. That becomes an enduring state," she maintains.

Lynette's research study is already acknowledged as being the only work of its kind in Ireland.

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