I'm a 27 year old uni student who loves to keep busy in this great city. Follow me as I show you my favourite little places and things to do!
Published July 30th 2012
Gridiron? In Queensland?
Have you ever found yourself watching movies like Remember the Titans or Any given Sunday and thought, 'I could do that.' Or do you find yourself sitting for hours playing Madden on your console of choice and wishing that there was a way you could play that sport for real? Well, wish no more because with ten gridiron clubs throughout Brisbane, guaranteed there is a club close to you.
American Football is the national sport in the United States and from pretty much the time that boys begin to walk they are throwing and catching footballs. In Australia, the game is much less popular and you would be forgiven for being completely oblivious to the local competition. But we do play it in Brisbane and the competition is surprisingly competitive! The competition itself has seen many clubs come and go over the years with many of the founding clubs dissolving or renaming and relocating themselves but despite this there is still steadfast loyalty and hot rivalries between various clubs that help to make the game that much more enjoyable.
When I tell people that I play gridiron one of the first questions I am asked is 'do you wear all the gear?' The answer is yes, from the helmet and shoulder pads down to the spandex and leg pads, we wear the full kit and hit hard! But don't fret if you don't own the gear, because let's face it, unless you're an American ex-pat then there's a pretty good chance you've never owned it or even know what all the gear actually is! The gear is all provided as part of your membership costs and is hired out to you for the season, so you can customise it to suit your comfort levels and you just give it back at the end of the year. Of course, you can buy your own kit if you wish and the clubs all have great knowledge, advice and contacts on the best gear to get at the lowest price.
But I don't know the rules Tristan!' Not a worry in the world. When I first started playing, and indeed when most people start playing, the only experience they've had is PlayStation games and Hollywood movies so don't stress if you don't know what you're doing, there are plenty of NFL fanatics who can set you straight. But for all you detail minded people, the competition follows NCAA rules as used in the college competition in the US. The season itself runs from August until November/December, depending on finals with pre-season starting for some clubs as early as April or May.
In Queensland, the sport is very much dominated by football players from all codes who are looking for something in the off season or perhaps are looking for a new way to dish out big hits in the sporting arena, but predominantly the competition is about having fun, with most players from different clubs knowing one another as well as the referees by name. So if you're looking for a new sport to try or if you're simply looking for a new local sport to watch on a Saturday afternoon/night, then why not go along to a gridiron game and see it in action. All the information about the Gridiron QLD competition can be found here. The website features links to all of the local teams as well as information about the QLD and Australian gridiron teams and national and international competition matches. So if you've ever thought about it, check it out, it may just become your new favourite sport!