Good planning for good routines for happier players

Players respond well to routines at training. It gives them a safe environment where they feel comfortable to express themselves.

That’s one of many reasons to plan your session. That doesn’t mean you don’t have some flexibility and are prepared to adjust. But do that from a plan.

Here’s a potential plan which gives you and your players a good mix of the familiar and the new. You can stretch them in an activity they’ve done before, adding wrinkles as the players progress. You can introduce different techniques, tactics and skills in that part of the session or a new one.

Crucially, the transitions are quick when the players know what they are doing. So, about an hour’s activity might look like this:

  1. A familiar warm-up game (like Stuck in the mud for younger players) for 10 minutes
  2. A skill exercise from last week, with developments for 10 minutes
  3. A game, like touch rugby, with a couple of small changes for 10 minutes
  4. A new skill exercise with NO developments 10 minutes (maximum)
  5. And finish with a game. The final game will focus on how to win through the principles of play, and look very much like the game you might play in your next match.

Where’s the fun? You create that through your delivery, enthusiasm, encouragement and improvements.

Here are some examples for each of the first four elements:

  1. Warm-up game: Kabaddi for rugby
  2. A skills exercise: Decision-Making Warm-Up
  3. A game, with changes:Game changer
  4. A new skill exercise:An introduction to angles and switches

A good mix of games, challenges and chances to experiment.

If you are back into team training this week…enjoy! It’s been a long wait.

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