Since rugby union became a professional sport in the mid-90s, its popularity has soared. It is now played at all levels and by all ages. Whether you are male or female, young or old, mobile or in a wheelchair, you can get involved in the sport.
If rugby is a sport you are interested in, the BBC Sport website gives you some hints and tips on where to start, from finding a club to the different types of rugby available and how to acquire the skills to become a coach.
Coaching in rugby has also come on leaps and bounds in the last 20+ years. Historically, training was mainly limited to playing games; today, it has moved with the times and become far more professional and scientific. A range of dynamic drills aimed at improving all aspects of a player’s fitness and skill level have replaced the likes of static stretching. Let’s take a look at why drills are so important, what benefits they bring for players and teams, and what format they should take.
What are the benefits of rugby drills?
Specific drills – as oppose to standard warm-ups – ensure that players are focussing on key skills at the same time as warming up. This gives players the added speed, strength and flexibility they require to perform better during games.
What format should they take?
As a coach, keeping training sessions engaging, fun and varied can be difficult. Having a structured teaching plan will help you to stay on track, making sure that you include all the relevant skills and helping to boost confidence within the team. Are you Teaching rugby? Review our rugby drills at Sportplan or use a similar resource. Using this type of professional tool will also ensure you are kept up to date with the latest research into best practice and provide you with a wide range of ideas that you can incorporate into your sessions.
A structured approach will also mean that you allocate sufficient time to each of the key skills required in the game, such as running, passing, decision-making, tackling, and understanding positional roles.
Playing rugby, whether professionally or simply as a fun way to keep fit, brings many health benefits, with structured training programmes ensuring everyone involved gets the most from each session.