Powerchair Football was first introduced into Ireland in 2003. It wasn’t played in any formal structure until 2009 when the Association of Irish Powerchair Football was formed and became the governing body of the sport in Ireland to organise National League and Cup competitons, to prepare teams for International competitions and Youth Camps and to develop the sport in Ireland and give every Powerchair user the opportunity to play the sport and experience the social and sporting benefits.
There are clubs covering most areas of Ireland, with the west and north west in development. Ireland would have about 60 players actively playing the sport within the established and developing teams and clubs.
There are five teams in the National Premiership:
- Midlands United
- DCU Storm
- M and F United
- Belfast Trailblazers
- Kingdom Rebels
The Premiership is played over four rounds between September to April.
This year we have a Championship/Development Division with four clubs
- Belfast Trailblazers
- Lightening Powerchair Football Club
- St Joeys
- Heroes Powerchair Football Club
SAC League – Social and Competitive League
This year we introduced a second league, with players all mixed up from the regular clubs and chosen at the start into a team and they stay with that team for three weekend rounds
playing twelve matches.
There is constant development of new players and teams around the country.
Internationally, Ireland competed at the World Cup in 2011 in Paris. Ireland sent two teams to the FIPFA Metro U-18 tournament in Paris in 2013. Ireland had a club team, Midlands United at the European Champions Cup in Paris in 2013. Ireland successfully hosted the European Nations Cup in 2014 in Limerick and qualified for the next World Cup. Ireland have always sent participants to youth camps and international development events.
Adam Parry, coach of Northern Thunder in the UK, assisted by Kathryn Easson are the current coaches of the Ireland team preparing for the World Cup. There is a group of fourteen players who come together on a monthly basis for a double weekend camp in preparation for the World Cup.
Most of the players playing in the leagues have been classified over a period of time at tournaments and in preparation for selection for tournaments. Classification is not currently imposed on teams in our leagues.