What are our Junior Players Focussing on this Term?
The U5s focus this term is to foster a love of being at TRC playing rugby, to build friendships within the group and form a bond with the coaches and the club. We want the kids to be excited to come to rugby every Sunday morning.
Coaches will be concentrating on skills development as well as fun. The target is to get skills and understanding of the game to the point where the kids can participate in basic matches by the end of the term.
Skills we will focus on are handling/ball control, passing and running with the ball (including traffic). Soft skills include introduction and reinforcing of 3 of the 5 fundamentals of rugby ethos: Teamwork, Respect, and Enjoyment.
The U6’s mantra is to “Provide an enjoyable, safe and inclusive environment for all players to develop skills, knowledge, and enthusiasm for the game.”
After developing the children’s basic skills in U5’s, we’re now focusing on basic game concepts around attack and defense while further enhancing core skills such as catching, passing and running with the ball. Training sessions are less like cat herding….with 10 coaches, we can now give the kids one-on-one time to address areas of improvement and we’re seeing amazing progress in their understanding and playing of the game.
This is a transitional year where the kids need to move from U6 non-contact rugby into U8 contact rugby. So whilst we still want it to be fun, we want to transition/focus their training to make sure they are ready for next season. World Rugby had identified 6 Key Principals, the first half of this season, we want to just focus on the following 4 Key Principals*:
1. Go forward
2. Provide support / help each other
3. Apply pressure
4. and a new one specific to younger kids: react quickly and stay alert.
Contesting possession and continuity will come later. In addition, we also want the kids to spend more time focusing on passing and catching to develop these vitally important skills.
With the move into contact, there are significant focus areas with an emphasis on tackling, ball placement when tackled, controlled and competitive rucking and of course continuing to focus on running straight and passing the ball. We’re currently 6 weeks in and the kids are loving it. Safety is paramount so head position when tackling is critical and we drive home the 4 phases of Aim, Cheek to Cheek, Rings of Steel, Squeeze and Drive. There are many rule changes with regards the offside line and how to enter a ruck so lots of learning but the kids are picking it up real quick!