Shinty in Scotland
Or in Gaelic - "iomain" or "Camanachd" (prounounced yi-mane and ca-man-achd)

Introduced by the Irish over 2,000 years ago with Christianity.
Official Shinty Website:

Shinty is unique to Scotland and one of the oldest games in the world. The game is similar to games such as hockey and lacrosse in some aspects and has historical roots with golf and ice hockey. As with lacrosse the game is a fast moving aerial game where physical fitness is tested to the limits. However, different from both hockey and lacrosse as in Shinty, feet can be used to stop the ball but not the hands (unless you are the goal-keeper). You can carrry the ball on your caman which can be also be swung above shoulder height.....a skilful eye and a sense of survival are paramount!!

The Game

  • Fast moving skilful sport that, like lacrosse is thrilling to watch
  • Played between 2 teams of 12 players
  • Each player is "armed" with a curved stick called a Caman (pronounced ca-man) which has a triangular in section
  • Each game lasts 90 minutes
  • Shinty is a community game played in some of the most remote parts of Scotland
  • The Dell playing fields at Kinguisse are considered by some to be the original home of organised shinty as we know it today.

The Rules
The fundamental difference between hockey and shinty is that in the game of shinty there is no restriction on the swing of the caman. Players can strike the ball with both sides of the stick - like ice hockey. However, handling and reaching for the ball is not allowed.

The "stick"
The caman was originally made of ash or hickory cut from a tree with a natural bend, but nowadays modern sticks are made from strips of wood glued together. The shortage of high quality wood in some areas of the country led to experimentation with various other materials such as aluminium but players have always reverted back to the natural product.

The Ball
The Ball is a similar size to a tennis ball. The interior is cork and worsted, with an outer cover of leather or a similar approved material. Originally blocks of wood or pieces of cork were used instead of the modern ball until the rules were formally accepted about 100 years ago and the cork ball became the standard.

Shinty is still a truly amateur sport, although the level of skill and athletic ability demands great things of the players. Some players travel hugh distances to play and represent the club in competitions. The best teams and players play in the national premier league and there are different grades of the game from school teams to international games.

The Glenmorangie Camanachd Cup Knock Out Championship was first played in 1896 and won by Kingussie Annual event with the the cup final normally played on the first Saturday in June. The cup final attracts shinty's biggest crowds of between 3,000 - 5,000.

Shinty and Hurling
Hurling is played in Ireland with different sticks from shinty players with a broad face. There often are matches between the shinty and the hurling teams on an organised basis. The first games were played in 1897 in Glasgow . Challenges regularly take place at club level particularly in the summer.

Shinty Teams
Aberdeen University Balgownie Playing Fields, Aberdeen
Ballachulish Jubilee Park, Ballachulish
Beauly Braeview Park, Beauly
Boleskine Smith Park Inverarnie
Bute The Meadows, Rothesay
Caberfeidh Castle Lead, Strathpeffer
Col Glen Colintraive, Argyll
Dunfermline Dunfermline
Edinburgh Uni. Peffermill Playing Field, Edinburgh
Fort William An Aird, Fort William
Glasgow Mid Argyll Pirie Park, Govan, Glasgow
Glasgow University University Playing Fields, Glasgow
Glengarry Craigard, Invergarry
Glenorchy Mart Park, Dalmally, Argyll
Glenurquhart Blairbeg, Drumnadrochit
Inveraray The Winterton, Castle Grounds
Inverness Bught Park, Inverness
Inverness UHI University of the Highlands and Islands Camanachd Club
Kilmallie Canal park, Caol, by Fort William
Kincraig Kincraig
Kingussie The Dell, Kingussie
Kinlochshiel Balmacara, near Kyle
Kintyre The Meadows Park, Campbeltown
Kyles Athletic Sports Field, Tighnabruaich
Lochbroom Inverlael, Ullapool
Lochaber Camanachd Playing Field, Spean Bridge
Lochcarron Battery Park, Lochcarron
London Camanachd London (cup matches in Scotland)
Lovat Balgate, Kiltarlity, near Inverness
Musselburgh Musselburgh, near Edinburgh
Newtonmore The Eilan, Newtowmore
Oban Camanachd Mossfield Park, Oban
Oban Celtic Ganavan, Oban
Skye Camanachd Portree, Isle of Skye
St. Andrews University University Playing Fields, St. Andrews
Strachur Strachur Park
Strathclyde Police Loch Inch, Glasgow
Strathglass Cannich Playing Field
Tayforth South Inch, Perth
Taynuilt Taynuilt Sports Field, Argyll

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