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Back You are here: Home Sports Rugby Other Rugby: Coaching Tips by Jake White
Wednesday, 17 April 2019 09:10

Rugby: Coaching Tips by Jake White

Written by  Jake White

Teams should train like they are going to play the match, if not harder. Coaches must train like they are going to play – that means simulating game situations.

As Eddie Jones says, if you’re receiving 60% of your possession from turnover ball or from kick returns (and coaches must detect this and work it out), 60% of your practice should be allocated to playing from kick returns or turnover possession.

Most coaches run off to the scrumming machine and spend 45 minutes scrumming, when you have eight scrums in a match. It’s not to say scrumming isn’t important as it determines the flow of the match, it’s just about time allocation and using it wisely. This is exactly why coaches need analysis.

Match simulation must also be tougher than what you would get in the game. For example, when practising breakdowns, send three or four cleaners to the player trying to turn over ball. He will then be accustomed to the intensity when he actually has two players clearing him out in a match.

For mauling, try and get your pack to stop 12 players. When they have to stop the drive from eight players during the match, it won’t be a shock and will be easier.

Teams should train at the same intensity as matches, with practices resembling match situations. There must be a clear plan from the coach as to what he wants to achieve from the practice so that the players feel there is value to the session.

Teams and age groups should practise together in squads. In other words, the U15A and B teams should be a squad, and while the B side is running attack, the A side is working on defence.

How to warm up for matches? Pre-game warm ups should be the same as the captain’s practice, so there is no element of surprise and the players are familiar with the routine.

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