EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Rugby coaching tips for catching a high ball

When the Australian national rugby team found they were not winning many kick offs as receivers, the then Head Coach, Eddie Jones, turned to Aussie Rules football (the Australian Football League). The rugby training methods he adopted significantly improved the percentage of kick offs his team won cleanly.

Aussie Rules football rivals rugby union and rugby league in popularity in Australia. In its simplest form, it requires players to kick and catch a ball slightly smaller than a rugby ball. The style of catching a high ball is different to that coached in rugby.

Tips for catching position

  • Keep your eyes on the ball at all times.
  • Line your body up with the flight of the ball.
  • Jump off one foot, swinging the other knee up to gain maximum height.
  • Meet the ball slightly in front of your head and with your arms extended (the so-called "long arms" position).

The "W" grip rugby tip

  • Get you hands into the "W" position.
  • Ensure your fingers are outstretched with your thumbs almost together.
  • This will allow you to catch the ball firmly with your fingers.

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