chapter  19
Gaelic football in a sociological perspective
WithJohn Connolly, Paddy Dolan
Pages 10

The sports of Gaelic football, handball and hurling remain one of the few remaining amateur sports in the world. This is somewhat remarkable given the gradual erosion of the amateur ethos across a whole range of sporting domains that has occurred over the course of the last 130 years, including sports such as rugby union which held a strong amateur ethos until relatively. While the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) was established as an amateur sorting organization the rules and ethos institutionalized never reflected a pristine form of amateurism. The balance between amateurism and professionalism, which lay firmly in the former, began to shift somewhat in the direction of professionalization in the 1930s and 1940s. Despite the advance of professionalization, the amateur and voluntary conception, and organization, of sport within the GAA remains strong. Notwithstanding, it would be remiss not to suggest that both amateurism and voluntarism have been eroded somewhat over the decades.