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Here’s how to coach beginner rugby team into great little players

All right so you have been brave enough to take on the role of coaching a beginners rugby team. Firstly congratulations, welcome to the junior coaching ranks. I’m not going to try and hide the fact that this season will either be extremely rewarding as you watch your team grasp the skills and rules needed or it will be a nightmare.

Generally speaking if you are prepared for each training session you will have a fun and rewarding season watching your players growing in confidence and skill. The parents will be your biggest ally if they see their kids having fun and improving.

So where do you start? What do you coach first and what are the players capable of doing?

Don’t be overwhelmed, you aren’t alone, this is generally the first reaction a beginners rugby coach experiences. You might have played rugby before or maybe you are still playing now, but what do you coach kids and where do you start?

The good news is we have made it easy for you. We have broken down the key elements a player under the age of 10 years needs to learn and created 3 manuals that progressively build the young players skill level and understanding of the game.

What are the key areas a beginner needs to learn in the first year of Rugby?

Can you remember the first few days of rugby or the first time you picked up a ball and started to play? Most of us can’t and to add to that the game has change quite a lot, not to mention the coaching techniques.

One of the biggest mistakes a coach makes is to try and cram as much learning into one season of rugby, resulting in a very confused little player. The aim is to try and stagger the learning process and build on the skills learnt. In the first year it important to coach the players the following:

- Onside and off side  
- Passing technique
- Spacial awareness
- Running technique
- Basic defence

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Click here to download a free overview and game list of the manual

 

 Have a look at the game sheet layout

What’s the best way to coach kids rugby?

Games have become a very popular medium for coaching young rugby players, mainly because it is fun and the learning points can be disguised with in the game so the players don’t realise they are learning while they play.

Games are effective because they:

  • They can be taught by coaches of all levels of experience
  • The key learning points become the coaches focal point
  • They are perfect for big or smaller groups
  • They can be adapted to the players skill level
  • They keep the players attention
  • Variables can be added to increase the difficulty or relativity to rugby

How do you create a learning game?

The way we develop our coaching games is very simple and as you progress through your coaching career you’ll begin to see the ease a game can be developed and the relevance a game has in the education process. We always start with 3 objectives - these are our learning points - then we work out what variables the players will encounter in a rugby game and finally we mix the 2 together to create a relevant and fun learning tool. Have a look at Space Invades - a passing game designed to teach the players to pass to moving targets.

Games aren’t a magic pill!

Yes games are effective in coaching the players the skills of rugby and keeping them focused, however, it isn’t a case of just telling them the rules and letting them go for it. You will have to coach them by telling why they are playing this game, what relevance this game has to the rugby game and reinforce the learning points constantly.

To make this easier for you we have developed trigger phrases in every game that will help the players remember the correct technique for a given skill. It’s important the coach uses these trigger phrases when he/she plays the games with the kids. Most importantly the coach has to be consistent with the trigger phrases to reinforce them in the players mind and when it comes to game day this will mean the coach simply has to call the trigger phrase and the players react accordingly.

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Game Illustration

Here are some game illustrations from the Beginners Rugby Manual

 

Line Tag is a game designed to teach the players the value of defending in a line.

 

Conveyer Belts Relay teaches the players that passing wide is quicker than running wide.

 

Wrecking Ball Relay teaches supporting from depth and running onto the ball.

So how do the manuals work?

Each manual is designed with the key skill elements necessary for the players to improve and understand rugby in mind. The 3 manuals are progressive, meaning each season new skills are added to the current skill set, increasing the players ability step by step.

This doesn’t mean you can’t pick this manual up and start coaching your current players with it. The manuals do revisit games from the previous years so as to refresh and reinforce the skills learnt.

If you have only discovered our manuals this season and you are worried the players won’t have the skill level to participate, don’t worry. That is the beauty of games, they cater to all player skill levels. You can start coaching this manual to them and they will pick it up easily because we recap the important games from the previous season.

The key advantage of this manuals is that it works on a fortnightly system, meaning the games are repeated 2 weeks in a row. This is because we understand you as a coach only really get to coach them for 1 hour a week and its necessary to recap the skills to make sure they sink in. It also makes it easier for you to recap the game the second week as you are more familiar with the games and then you can focus on the areas the players weren’t understanding in the previous weeks training session.

Are our programs better than others?

Yes and No! We have had the experience of working with small and large groups of kids over a number of years and we have had the luxury of seeing what works and what doesn’t. There will be coaches that like to follow a manual from start to finish and then there are the coaches who only want to use the odd game to supplement their own coaching plan. The most important thing is the coach feels confident with the coaching skills and knowledge they have.

I will go as far as saying that if you follow the manual and use all the trigger phrases you will see your coaching improve and more importantly you will see your players improve. In fact if you don’t feel an improvement in your coaching and the players skill level by the end of the season then contact me and I will give you your money back.

 
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What do you get when you buy this manual?

Yes, this manual isn’t free, lets face it free coaching manuals are usually a promotional tool for another coaching manual or product and I think you will agree with me, the free stuff is usually a guide which will tell you what you should do and not how you can do it.

At least with this manual there is nothing missing, you have a weekly plan, a weekly overview and a step by step game sheet explaining how to coach the game, why you are coaching the game and what to say. We even explain to you what the age group objectives are and how the players skill level will progress over the next three years. There are no gaps, just a simple to follow weekly training programs.

Yes it is $67, it’s not cheap, however, it isn’t expensive either. If you take into consideration that you won’t have to worry about a coaching session for 20 weeks and if you do the maths, each week will only cost you $3.35, I think that’s great value for your money. Wouldn’t you pay $3.35 every week to have someone come in and explain to you how to coach your players, I know I would.

Most importantly there is nothing better than watching the players improve their skill and confidence. To add to that just think of what the parents will think of you if you can get their little kids to love rugby, play confidently and play to his/her potential. It will all be worth it in the end.

I hope I have explained everything clearly, if you still have some questions feel free to send me an e-mail and I will answer your questions - jason@readyrugby.com.au.

Good luck with your season

Click here to order and download The Beginners Rugby Manual today.

Yours in rugby,

P.S. As I mentioned before, if you find that you followed the manual and you haven’t seen any improvements in you players over the season contact me and I will give  you your money back. I am confident that you will enjoy these manuals so I am willing to place a money back guarantee on them.

 

20 weeks of easy to follow, ready made training sessions for only $67 = $3.35/week

That's not much to pay for a full seasons' worth of training sessions.