EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Jazz up catching

Catching is a crucial skill. Minis must work on catching the ball in their hands away from the body and not with their arms close to the chest. Use the following three activities to sharpen up catching in a competitive yet fun environment.

 

Start by emphasising that the best position for catching a pass is hands outstretched to give the passer a target and hands in a ‘W’ shape with thumbs close together (see picture 1). Then, get the following three games on the go…

 

Jazz up catching

1. Relay races

Equal numbered teams start side by side, 2m apart with a ball at one end. On “GO”, teams pass the ball along the line and back again.

The winner is the first team to get the ball back to the start. Players will soon realise that the winning teams are the ones who pass most accurately.

 

Increase the distance between players as they improve.

2. Rob the nest

Place three each of four different types of ball (rugby, tennis, golf and beach or football) in a marked out centre circle. Mark out four nests round the centre circle, all the same distance away. Teams of three players occupy each nest
(see picture 2).

On “GO” the first player from each team runs to the centre circle, picks up a ball and passes it back to a teammate who catches it and places it in their nest. The passer runs back to his nest and the next player runs out, picks up a different type of ball and passes it back.

To win, a team needs to get one of each type of ball into their nest. Players keep taking balls from the centre circle until they are all gone.

 

Then they start stealing the balls they need from each other’s nests. Players cannot stop other teams stealing from their nest and all balls must be passed back to the nest, not carried.

3. Catching ‘T’

A rugby ball is passed back and forth along a line of three players. Each player aims to pass the ball as soon as they have caught it. A fourth player passes the tennis ball as soon as the middle man has passed the rugby ball (see picture 3). The middle man has to return the pass before he touches the rugby ball again.

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