New/old ruck laws
in Rucking & Mauling, Rugby drills
Ian Diddams reviews the latest law directives around the ruck, and looks at how you might adjust your training sessions to help your players become more effective in this contact area. MORE
EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES
Sometimes it’s possible to wear down the opposition with constant pressure. You use multiple rucks until a gap opens. At the top level, this can last beyond 10 rucks and sometimes over 20. It is unlikely that your team will have as many consecutive rucks but you can replicate constant ruck, pass, ruck situations with this session.
Warm up time: 5-7
Session time: 8-10
Development time: 10-15
Game time: 10-15
Warm down time: 5-8
Rucking is not a pushing contest but a battle for the space over the ball because you cannot put your hands on it.
Work on players winning the space over the ball, clearing away obstacles and staying on their feet. If they are not clearing or protecting, it is a waste of time. If you can film them on your phone during training, even for a couple of 15-second bursts, they will be surprised to see how little some of them contribute – and make them want to contribute more in the future!
Set up two groups of three players as in picture 1. Put a ball carrier about a metre away from a tackler. Tell the ball carrier to run to the cone immediately behind the tackler, where he is tackled and the other players ruck over the ball (see picture 2).
When the ball is clear on either side, shout “BREAK” and the players discard the ball then run around to pick up a different ball from behind the attacking team’s starting point (see picture 3).Both sets of three run into the end corridor and then to the other end passing once each before resetting and repeating (see picture 4).
Go through three times.
Instead of both teams running the same way between the cones for the passing element, get one group to run in the opposite direction to create chaos.
Put a defender inside the running channel.
Add a player to each group.
Set up four ruck pad holders in pairs as in the bottom picture. Put five attackers opposite each pair of pad holders. When you shout “GO”, the pad holders have to be driven back at least three metres. At least two players must do this. The other players run into the box and compete for the ball. Each side tries to score a try.