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Sports Council NI Home Page >> What we do >> Performance Sport >> Regional Development of Sport


The Regional Development Squad Programme

The process of selection and preparation for the performers who participate in the Golden Cow Youth Games commences almost one year ahead of the event.  Between April and September each year talented performers from across the province are nominated by their schools and clubs to undergo trials for selection onto the respective Regional Development Squads (RDS).  

For some sports, coaching and development sessions commence during the summer holiday period while for others, the squads meet for the first time during the regional Schools of Sport, which  take place in each of the 5 Education & Library Board areas at Halloween.  

Following the Schools of Sport the RDS programme continues over the winter and spring months offering participants approximately 20 hours of quality coaching and performance development sessions.  They conclude with the climax of the Golden Cow Youth Games in May. 

As many as possible of the original Regional Development Squad participants will be included within the Golden Cow Youth Games to ensure that those who have trained hard throughout the year are given the chance to display their talents and enjoy the finale of the RDS Programme.  Many of the sports involved will play small-sided games to ensure maximum participation for all the performers. 

It is hoped that the young people who have been involved in the regional development squad programme will progress into a provincial or national squad programme of their sport in the following season, based on their talent and commitment to the sport. 

The Regional Development Squad Programme is managed by 5 Area Sports Partnership Groups (ELB based) and the governing bodies of sport.  The first 3 years of the programme 2000 2003 have been funded by the Talented Junior Lottery Sports Fund.  

Sports Involved In the Regional Development Squad Programme 2002/03

        Athletics (Mixed)

        Badminton (Mixed)

        Basketball (Boys & Girls)

        Camogie (Girls)

        Cricket (Boys)

        Gaelic Football (Girls)

        Hockey (Boys & Girls)

        Netball (Girls)

        Soccer (Girls)

        Squash (Mixed)

        Swimming (Mixed)

        Table Tennis (Mixed)

        Trampolining (Mixed)

        Volleyball (Mixed)  


For further information contact [email protected] 




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Last modified: Friday March 05, 2020.