|Around the Academy:
GAA players wear the same kind of boots as footballers, but nowadays there is a wide ranging selection of boots to choose from and really it depends on personal preference.
It is great to have the newest, coolest looking pair of boots, but they may not be the best for you so the best fitting and most comfortable boots are what you want.
A player will stand out because of their ability rather than the boots they are wearing.
It is important to first of all understand the shape of your feet and your running style.
Knowing whether you are flat-footed or have a high arch should have a bearing when you come to deciding which boot to purchase.
Ideally your boots will fit snugly, although during teenage years with feet still growing it is advisable to allow some room to compensate.
Also, different players prefer different fits.
It is advisable to wear the same types of socks you will be wearing on the pitch when you try on a boot for size.
Leather and synthetic boots are both available in an expanding market.
There are advantages with each and you should make your own judgement by trying both.
Leather moulds itself to the shape of your feet but can stretch out of shape in wet conditions.
Synthetic boots are often lighter and less expensive. Try to find soft uppers, this will prevent potential injuries - you may even find that a boot that combines leather and synthetics is best for you.
Boots with screw-in studs tend to be popular because it offers a player the opportunity to adjust their footwear depending on the conditions.
If the pitch is particularly muddy then it is a good idea to use a longer set of studs, changing to shorter studs on a drier day.
And an extra set of studs can be purchased far cheaper than another pair of boots.
When changing or tightening studs it is a good idea to apply a bit grease to the thread to prevent rusting.