EVEN in the middle of a pandemic, the University of Limerick Handball Club are welcoming members and constantly generating new ideas in hope to keep members interested while contact is restricted.
Over the past twelve months they have done this in various new ways, increasing their membership and are gearing up for a fundraiser in conjunction with NUIG Handball club for the benefit of the National Centre for Youth Mental Health, Jigsaw.
Check it all out below!
Amid the global pandemic, all at UL Handball club have remained vigilant and open in finding some ‘off court’ alternate activities to keep our members occupied. While it would have been easy to leave everyone to their own devices, we all worked hard to provide light entertainment and virtual meetings for all our members throughout the last semester and will endeavour to do the same this semester. The start of semester one saw us gain ten new members which we were delighted to welcome to our club and are looking forward to meeting in person, hopefully sooner rather than later.
We held a raffle of some highly sought after ICHA gear from previous years, a raffle that saw our social media pages grow and reach a larger audience all while enticing new members to join. Later in the semester we ran a Games Night, consisting of general knowledge, dingbats, a guess the theme song round and a handballer round. One of our new first year members took first place on the night. It was great to see our new members taking part and meeting the rest of the crew despite the current situation.
Perhaps the highlight of our semester was the talk we hosted, open to all ICHA members, with Ciana Ní Churraoin, Sports Psychologist, a past UL student and handball club member. The talk titled, ‘The Space in Between’ focused on the main areas of how we can utilise this time at home to work on our mindset and maintain our goals. I think anyone who attended would agree we gained valuable insight into how mind over matter is often key to unlocking our unique skills both on and off the court.
This time last year we were in the middle of our training for the US Handball Collegiate Championships, hosted by University of Texas at Austin. For many of our members it was a trip we will all remember. Thinking about it brings back some nostalgia knowing it will be 2022 before we play Stateside again. The two weeks were loaded with playing games, exploring the city and shopping. For new members and current members still to attend, but it in your diaries for next year!
At home on Irish soil, we have many tournaments throughout the college year that result in great weekends away. The start of the year would see us preparing for the 60×30 Tournament, usually held in Wexford. As we have no four-wall courts on campus we drive to Bohermore practice. The weekend in Wexford supplies a great start to the semester, meeting up with the other colleges after the summer break.
The 40×20 Doubles Championship in Galway and the Singles in Belfast are two standout weekends on the College Handball calendar. We spend the weeks leading up to these in a freezing cold alley in Newport, which we are extremely lucky to have access to, training and enjoying with lead up to both tournaments.
This semester we have decided to combat the effects that the pandemic can have on our wellbeing and are running a fundraiser, in conjunction with NUIG Handball Club, for the National Centre for Youth Mental Health, JIGSAW. Our fundraiser ‘5 for JIGSAW’, will see both clubs complete 5 challenges over 5 days in the hopes of raising much needed funds for this charity and working together as a team to complete the challenges. Beginning Monday 15th January, we would kindly ask as many people as possible to get involved and donate to this worthy cause. All details on how to get involved and donate will be available on our social media pages, @Ulwolveshandball on Instagram and UL Wolves Handball Club on Facebook so keep an eye out there.
We hope everyone has a good semester and we look forward seeing you all and getting back on the courts soon!
From all at UL Handball Club.
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