Create scenarios to help understand roles defending the edge of a ruck. It focuses on good speed off the line and being in a strong position to make a tackle. MORE
In essence, lots of time is spent on positioning players to tackle and not enough time on setting and then tackling under fatigue conditions.
Warm up time: 5-7
Session time: 8-10
Development time: 10-15
Game time: 10-15
Warm down time: 5-8
This session is based on making the players more aware of what is happening before they get into position.
To do this, the session sneakily breaks player concentration because the defender might not have to make the tackle at that ruck, or indeed the next ruck.
They might also be making two or three consecutive tackles.
The mental challenge is to make a good tackle every time, so this session works on strong technique under pressure.
Set up a 5m square box as in picture 1, with two attackers in the middle and two defenders on the outside.
Call out a letter (or ruck pad) and the defenders and attackers move to that ruck pad (see picture 2).
The first attacker either passes or goes himself. Attackers aim to get out of the box in front of them without going over the ruck pad. Use full contact. You release the attackers whenever you want (you could countdown from five).
Repeat several times before swapping roles of attackers and defenders. The defenders have to run outside the box to get into position.
Add one more attacker and one more defender.
Have both sets of players outside the box then nominate who will attack and who will defend before saying which ruck pad to run to.
In a 20m x 10m box, three defenders first defend ruck pad A (see picture 3) and then go to ruck pad B and then run to C. They can run through the box to get into position. The attack does not have to wait for the defenders to be in position but because there is an overload on the defence team, it is likely the defenders will have enough time to get back into position.
Once a tackle is completed or a try is scored, call “break”, which means the players run to the next ruck pad.