EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS RUGBY COACHES

Not a straight line

Ideally, planning and delivery would look like this:

You have a purpose, you set up a game to achieve the purpose and you end up with the purpose achieved. It is possible to develop the idea to look like this linear model.

As you work through the session, you adapt the rules based on the players’ reactions.

Yet, it would be dangerous to expect this to happen. Perhaps this might in a Premiership Academy environment where the age and experience of the player allow this smooth transition.

In your environment, it is more likely to be different. The end goal is always going to be that players experience success and develop, however, the journey might require more interventions. For example, changes in rules, pitch size, scoring, number of attackers, defenders, conditioned defence and restarts.

The session is far more likely to look like the model above in most instances, most especially as the coach tries new ideas and approaches.

It may well be that there are fewer steps, that the players require a little more time with certain steps, but the end goal remains the same.

It might be that the session goes back and forth a little as you try something new, it doesn’t quite work, you go back a step, either to give the players more time to grasp the concept or you as a coach need some time to consider another option.

I like sessions that go like this. It demonstrates that the challenges are exactly that: challenging. A smoother pathway may well mean that the challenges are too easy to grasp.

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