Proven, easy to use rugby drills, practice plans, training tips and advice for grassroots coaches

Rugby Coach Weekly offers proven and easy to use rugby drills, coaching sessions, practice plans, warm-ups, coaching tips and advice. The resources are created for the grassroots youth coach following best practice from around the world as well as insights from the professional game.

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Enter the outlet zone

Enter the outlet zone

By Mark Calverley, RFU Level 3 and IRB Level 4 qualified coach, and owner of the NZRFU Practicum award – the highest coaching award in New Zealand Use “outlets” to help players recognise space and move the ball into it. How to play • The ball can be passed in any direction. • Players may […]

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Long dogs (or pencil placement)

Long dogs (or pencil placement)

By Ian Diddams, RFU coach tutor with over 20 years experience in coaching at grassroots level Post tackle ball presentation with the body parallel to the touchlines and head nearest the player’s own goal line is known as the “long dog”. It keeps the ball farthest from opponents and closest to support while keeping the […]

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4 pre-season myths

4 pre-season myths

From Rugby Coach Weekly The biggest obstacles to making pre-season really work for your team are these four myths. Get past them to become the best prepared you have ever been. 1. ‘It’s all about getting fit’ No sportsperson ever needs to get fit, they just need to get fitter. Understandably, not all your team are […]

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Floor the jumper

Floor the jumper

Stop the maul at the lineout before it starts by focusing on the role of the defending player who is facing the opposition jumper. Why use it Lines up the opposite jumper and brings him to ground quickly once he has landed to prevent the maul forming and making progress.   Set up A ball, […]

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Get players engaging with the shoulder first in the tackle then driving firmly at the shorts or thigh

U11 & U12 Tackle at the right height

Get players engaging with the shoulder first in the tackle then driving firmly at the shorts or thigh. Set up a 10m square area with 1m coned gates in the centre at both ends. Put an attacker and a defender in the middle of the area by a red cone, facing their own coned gates. […]

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Noddy and Big Ears

Noddy and Big Ears

From Rugby Coach Weekly   Focus tacklers on getting their ears tight to the shorts of the ball carrier. This helps them engage their shoulder, keep their eyes open and use the right footwork.   Why use it   Where the head goes, shoulders follow. If the player keeps his eyes open in contact, he […]

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Side-on tackle reactions

U9 Side-on tackle reactions

Get players getting the head tight to the shorts of the attacker and the shoulder into the attacker’s legs when making a side-on tackle Put a tackler in the middle of the area and two attackers in front of him on the corners. Put a feeder behind the tackler on the other side of the […]

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Fends: Power through contact

Fends: Power through contact

From Rob Appleyard former Wales international rugby union player, former assistant coach to the Wales national under-20 rugby union team, defence coach to Newport Gwent Dragons. As a ball carrier approaches a defender he wants to keep the ball away from the grasping hands that prevent offloads and slow down placement. Today, I want to […]

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Tackle right: fall on top

Tackle right: fall on top

By Eamonn Hogan, experienced rugby coach working with representative teams in the UK and the US Players will be asked to perform a number of important roles once a tackle has been completed. This activity shows that being on top following a tackle allows them to get up quickly and back into the game before […]

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