Five minute rugby coaching session planner

Effective planning, leads to effective coaching, leads to effective performance. Of course, reality isn't like that for busy rugby coaches with "real" lives beyond the training pitch. So, what can you do if you’ve only got five minutes to plan a session for your team, but no idea what you are going to do?

Here is a simple guide from Paul Tyler, joint editor of Rugby Coach Junior, to help you plan an effective session in no time. I've included an example session plan for a junior team below, with a link to a template session plan form at The Huddle (my online coaching forum).

Plan the rugby coaching session

Set the goals: What do you want to achieve? Keep it simple and bring the players on at their pace.

Review previous sessions or games: What skills did you practise in the last session? Do you want to reinforce this? What could your players improve on from their last match?

List resource requirements: How many players will you have? How much space will you need? Do you have the right kit and equipment? Will you need help from other coaches?

Make sessions complementary: A good rugby drill session follows a theme throughout. When you split the units, make sure the forwards and backs work on the same theme. If you are looking to improve your handling, think about ways that each unit could help the other.

Complete and keep a session planning form

I always like to keep a reminder of what I want to practise in my pocket, and I complete and print out a form for every session I run. I like to keep all my session plans, so I can look back to see what we've done, or repeat or update the session at a later date.

An example session plan form

Click here to download a Session Plan Template and a completed example from The Huddle, the online forum for coaches worldwide. I completed the example in about five minutes, even though it has more detail than I might usually include.

In the session I concentrated on attacking from depth with the forwards supporting from a ruck. In another session I might work on a set piece attack and support.

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