The Shadow

The Rules

Divide the players into groups of four. The groups jog around with the players following each other. They have to concentrate to avoid bumping into another group and into each other.

The player at the front of each group holds a ball. The player behind is the “shadow”.

You make a call of either “PASS”, “POP”, “DOWN” or “ROLL”. The ball carrier must either:

  • PASS – Turn and pass to the shadow, or
  • POP – Pop the ball over their head to the shadow, or
  • DOWN – Put the ball down for the shadow, or
  • ROLL – Roll the ball for the shadow to pick up.

As soon as each player lets go of the ball, they run to join the back of line.

Set Up

Area: 10m x 10m.
Equipment: 1 ball per 4 players, bibs (if available).
Players: 16 – four groups of 4.


Whichever group can “PASS”, “POP”, “DOWN” and “ROLL” the quickest wins.

What to Call Out

  • “Look for space”
  • “Stay close to the player with the ball”
  • “Move quickly onto the ball”
  • “Communicate with your team mates”

Coaching Tips

Gently increase the speed the players run at and their intensity during this warm up. Only assist groups that are struggling to solve the problems.


Fun mini rugby games for 5 to 8 year olds

The shadow - part 1

The players jog around in groups avoiding each other.

The shadow - part 2

Decide how the players pass the ball to the shadows.

The shadow - part 3

The shadow collects the ball. The player behind becomes the next shadow.

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