By The Balls: Lindsay Peat, GAA And Basketball Player, Explains It All

When we sat down with Lindsay Peat, 34, from Artane, to chat training, she told us all about how she juggles football, basketball and her college course - she's studying PE and Biology teaching - alongside, occasionally, hanging out with her wife. #nonstop

Footballer and basketballer Lindsay Peat.

“I’ve been very lucky to play at a pretty high level, which has been great. My mum just wanted me to get off the street one summer, and she put me into basketball, and I’ve been playing since I was 13. I took up GAA in my early 20s – and they’ve been two main sports since.

“I co-captained the Irish senior women’s basketball team, that’s the highest level I played at. The organisation pulled us in 2010 due to lack of funding – I’d been in that senior squad since 2006, and we were one win off a play-off to Division A, which would have been huge for Irish basketball.

We haven’t had a senior women’s team since.

“I’m still playing, though – the highest level would be super-league, and I’ve played that for the last eight years anyway, that’s the highest division possible within the country. That would be travelling all around, playing teams from all over the country.

“With Dublin, when we’re getting ready for championships, you’re looking at three pitch sessions a week and at least two weights sessions – at least five sessions a week. A pitch session would be anything from an hour and a half to two hours, but you’d be working on a lot of stuff. At the gym, you’re looking at an intense hour. On top of that, depending on how you’re doing in that time, you’d be expected to maintain yourself… nutrition, do extra training if you’re unfit or coming back from injury.

“Basketball is probably, on average, three nights a week with a game at the weekend and training is usually two hours. And you’re expected to do extra on your own if needs be, especiallly pre-season. In-season, you’d be getting enough between matches and training.

“Then, if I had time, I’d do a gym session or try to get in a spin session. It would depend on college, maybe it’d be a busy period with assignments. When I was working, I would’ve gone to the gym at lunchtime and got in a weights session or a spin session.

Do I do anything else? My wife’s shouting at me here… no. [Laughs.]

“I’m a lot more aggressive in my play [than I am outside of it]. My reputation would be … I’d be tough on the pitch. The only time I struggle is if people don’t know me outside sports. The first time I made the senior Irish women’s basketball team, there was a bit of a vibe there… the girls I was playing with, I had previously been playing against.

“I remember, when the ice broke, we were laughing – they said, ‘we hated you.’ When they get to know me off the pitch, that’s when they see the real me. That’s not a personal thing. You have the ball, I want the ball, I’m taking the ball.

“What’s next? Well, I’ve been very lucky to be injury-free, so… I’d love to try rugby; women’s rugby is coming so big. The 7s is going for the Olympics, Irish women’s rugby… it would be a sport where I can mix my aggression.

“I’ve been in touch with Railway Union to try to get down and train, but I just haven’t had the time. I mightn’t be any use at rugby – but it’s just a case of wanting to try something new. After that, I’ll go into coaching; I would love to coach, but I still have a lot of learning to do, and I have to let the competitive streak go. You can’t really go into coaching with that, especially if you’re going to have young kids. Little five-year-olds, falling over, crying… they just don’t need that.”

Pic credit: Naomi Gaffey.

Make-up: Nicola Cuddy.

Hair: Helen Kenny.

Shot on location in DCU Sports Centre.