EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Twist and shape

Avoid slow ball at the tackle or even losing the ball by making every ball carrier far more active on the ground. Use these two exercises to build up players’ ball placement skills under pressure.

After the tackle is made, the farther away your player can place the ball from the defence, the harder it is for the opposition to disrupt it. Encourage good placement habits with these exercises.

  1. There are three placements: Sideways, jackknife and long/pencil.

  1. Get players to lie between three different-coloured cones. You call out a colour, and the ball carrier uses his core to shift the ball to that cone.
  2. Spread the cones out at different distances, so some placements are stretches.

TECHNIQUE

Having gone to ground, the tackled player looks to place the ball long, as far from the defenders as possible and reduce the width of the tackle gate. The use of the core (middle of the body) is vital.

DEVELOP

Once players are used to placing the ball, get a ball carrier to run into a ruck pad holder, drive him back 0.5m, go to ground and place the ball as far as possible from the supporting defender.

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