EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Get out of my space

Use competition to make players try different evasion skills. This session has one race and one game to challenge players to command their own space then find new spaces.


Warm up time: 5-7
Session time: 8-10
Development time: 10-15
Game time: 15-20
Warm down time: 5-8


What to think about

Your greatest challenge is matching players up. There is no point in pitching a slow prop against a nimble winger but you can adjust distances to handicap players where necessary.

Because there are obstacles in front of the player and not on the ground, runners will need to look up and not concentrate on their feet. Make sure there are plenty of repetitions so players have a chance to try different methods. Both elements are excellent to run again later in the season, because players will have had a chance to improve their footwork.

Set-up

  1. Attack the space you want but not until the last moment (to fool your opponent).
  2. Stay upright and look ahead.

What you get your players to do

Put five players on the middle cones. Have two facing one way and three the other (see picture 1.)

When you shout “GO”, the players race to any of the cones in front of them and then aim to get through one of the four gaps (see picture 2). If two players end up at the same gap, the first player through it wins (there should be enough space to pass, but there might be some contact).

If two players go through the gap side by side, they both lose. And no player is allowed to go across the cones in the middle. Winners stay in, losers are replaced. Winners get a point for two consecutive stays. They are then replaced.

Three players facing one way and two the other.

Three players facing one way and two the other.


Development

Two players facing the same direction hold ruck pads. They run to the middle of two of the gaps. The players aim for the spare gaps, with the last player through the loser (or if a player runs into a ruck pad).

Give the faster players a ball.

Make the players start on their fronts.

They all run to any cone in front of them, turn and aim to get through one of the four gaps. Any two players going through the same gap at the same time lose. The last player through a gap loses. Replace losers. Winners stay on.

They all run to any cone in front of them, turn and aim to get through one of the four gaps. Any two players going through the same gap at the same time lose. The last player through a gap loses. Replace losers. Winners stay on.


Game situation

Put two ball carriers at the corners of the two boxes (see picture 3) and two players on the other corners. When you shout “GO”, the ball carriers have to score in the opposite box, while the two defenders run over the cone in front of them and try to two-hand touch the ball carriers.

Players must have their heads up to avoid bumping into each other. A ball carrier caught becomes a defender.

Where two ball carriers aim to get across to the other box without being twohanded touched by the defenders. The defenders run over the cone in front of them before entering the arena.

Where two ball carriers aim to get across to the other box without being twohanded touched by the defenders. The defenders run over the cone in front of them before entering the arena.


What to call out

  • “Speed to the space is crucial – go for it”
  • “Don’t take the space over a team mate (or someone next to you), be aware of the players at the sides as well as in front”
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