5 facts about gymnastics in Ireland

1. There are 9 different disciplines in Irish Gymnastics (IG)

  • Womens Artistic (WAG)
  • Mens Artistic (MAG)
  • Tumbling
  • Acrobatics
  • Special Needs
  • All Disciplines
  • Aerobics
  • Trampolining
  • Rhythmic

2. There are eight different regions throughout the country in IG. In these eight regions, there are currently 92 clubs registered with IG, the governing body.

3. While Ireland is not renowned for producing gymnasts to the standard required for Olympic competition, Barry MacDonald became the first and only Irish Gymnast to compete in the Olympic Games when he performed at the 1996 Atlanta Games

4. In Ireland, Salto Gymnastics Club in Lisburn, Co Antrim is the country’s only dedicated gymnastics academy, one of only two full time gymnastics facilities. Every other club must hire time in a sports hall and put their equipment in and out every time they use it.

5. Earlier this year, IG received a core grant from the Irish Sports Council of €169,545 ($220,610.87 ) with an additional €89,000 ($115,806.23) under the Women In Sport grant scheme. Gymnastics is considered a minority sport compared to our national sports, Gaelic Football and Hurling, and other sports such as football, rugby and boxing.  These sports gain substantial grants from the Irish Sports Council.

How does this compare to your country?

Note that these facts may have changed since publishing this post as the interest in sport is becoming more popular.


  1. KFB says:

    New Zealand used to be like that – school hall hire with moving equipment in and out being the warm up!
    It’s much better now with full time facilities with full time coaches across the country. Still no where near Australia for success though. Like Ireland, very hard to compete for funding against the great god RUGBY.

  2. Admin says:

    Hi there,

    Thanks for your comment. That’s very interesting, I would’ve thought that gym would have been quite big in New Zealand, maybe that’s in thinking that the Australian team have been to a lot of big international competitions.

    We don’t have very long training hours, our competitive class train for 5 and a half hours a week, compared to other clubs who might train most days and at least double the amount our girls do. We waste time because of having to take out and put all of the equipment back in so we lose about 30 – 40 mins of a 3 hour class which is a lot.

    I heard yesterday, about another full time gym open in Northern Ireland but I am not sure if they are listed under IG or British Gymnastics.

    Bloody rugby! 😀

  3. Adde says:

    Are you Irish? I’d love to find out more about other systems and not so well-known gymnasts from around the world. Great blog, keep going!

  4. Admin says:

    I am indeed, thanks a million for your comment. Hope you’ll keep reading!

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  6. Admin says:


  7. Gym coach says:

    Hi thanks for this info, really interesting to know about gym in other countries outside the ones that gymnastics is so big in like United States and Australia!

  8. Rosie says:

    I enjoyed watching Kieran Behan compeate. I Believe he is able to move on to individual competition for the floor. I thought he was very good. And a very good representitive of your Nation.

    Good luck to him. and all your olympians.


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