Membership of the Squad
All juniors (under 21) from Ireland (North & South) who are interested in and enjoy orienteering, and who hope to become good enough to represent Ireland internationally.
If you need to know what your current age class is, we've made a guide here: Junior Age Classes
How (to join the squad)
Go orienteering on a regular basis, and train to the point where you can comfortably complete courses, understand and be able to use compass and interpret major contours. At that stage, just approach anyone involved in the squad or contact the IOA junior rep directly to get information on the next training event, and to be informed about upcoming events and opportunities. Generally, squad training is open to any interested juniors, but taking part in squad training is not a guarantee of selection to run on the team. Regardless, the training events are an excellent opportunity for juniors to get fitter, improve their orienteering, and have fun with other like-minded orienteering juniors from all over the country - many of which will become friends for life!
Squad members and aspiring members are expected to compete in (at least) the Irish Championships, the Regional Championships and any other major Irish events, as well as going to regular weekly orienteering events to gain practice & experience. Ideally, the aspiring elite athletes will also try to attend some international events like the JK - see the Events page for more information on the events we try to go to.
Junior Squad members
are expected to:
Be interested in (and enjoy) Orienteering
Put in effort to get better at Orienteering
Train for fitness
Look after for their own health (eating, sleeping, etc)
Be aware of, and observe, the anti-doping rules
are not expected to
give up other sports, hobbies, social life. And it is recognised that exams & study will always take priority.
For each major event, the team to represent Ireland in each of the associated age classes will be selected from within the squad by a team of independent selectors, with input from the coaches and managers on the performance of the athletes throughout the year. The selection process is meant to be transparent, and for each major event, the selection criteria will be published beforehand. This document will detail what standard is expected from the athlete, along with details of the selection races whose results will be used.
An example of a recent selection criteria document: https://www.orienteering.ie/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/JHI-Selection-Policy-Irish-Team-2020.pdf
Child Protection and Consent
The IOA keep an updated code of conduct document for young people in orienteering - the latest version can be found at https://www.orienteering.ie/about-us/resources/child-protection/. We require that all squad managers, coaches, and general helpers are Garda vetted, and have completed at least the Child Safeguarding level 1 course.
Each year, we ask parents/guardians of prospective junior athletes to sign a consent form to give permission for the junior to take part in squad events. Currently the consent is being collected via an online form, and is valid until the end of the next calendar year. The current form is avalable below: