Training to Train
Build the Rugby Engine - Fundamental Rugby Skills
The Player - FOCUSES
The players in this stage are generally 12 - 16 years old for boys and 11 - 15 years old for girls
In this stage, players have the capacity to focus and therefore can increase their competencies radically with the correct attention and application. Greater self-awareness and responsibility are characteristics of players at this stage which, if nurtured, will form the foundations for future realization and success. Players are highly competitive and foster a greater awareness of team spirit and common goals and values. This stage is a key DEVELOPMENT stage and the focus should be on process rather than outcomes.
The Coach - TEACHES and CHALLENGES
This can be a hard age group for coaches because of two differeing pools of players.
The Entry Player - This can often be an entry point for players in rugby and coaches need to teach the skills from stages 1 - 4 in a limited time period. It is important that the coach has a strong understanding of all the stages and skill development up to this point. Coaches often have to then prioritize practice time and individualize struction.
The Developing Player - Some players at this stage will have played rugby since stage 1 or 2 and therefore have higher DEVELOPING capacities as a player. The requirement for the coach is to go beyond teaching and challenge players to become more proficient and achieve higher standards of performance. The coach extracts a higher level of performance through appropriate challenges and application of pressure.
The key is to be able to find all participant's Challenge Zone.
The Game - PERFORMANCE
Even though players are now highly competitive and play in league and cup competitions, the essence at this stage is precise performance of the individual, units and team in the pursuit of achieving goals. The game can be more structured and cohesive, with a greater emphasis on the role of the units. However, to maximize DEVELOPMENT, the focus should be on performance in the pursuit of desired processes (individual, unit or team) rather than outcomes.