Add context to practices with the rugby coaching pyramid

Rugby season has begun again here in Wisconsin. It’s a great time to reflect both on last season as well as my offseason coaching development. In particular, I’ve been reviewing the lessons learned from my experience with Premiership Rugby Coaching Development Scholarship. One lesson that stands out it is the importance of teaching the players […]

Premiership Scholarship Day 5 – Key factor analysis and principles of play with London Irish and London Scottish

Day 4 of the Premiership Coaching Development Scholarship was busy and exhausting, but the break in curriculum delivery cleared our minds for a full day of learning on Day 5. We started off with a trip to the Hazelwood Centre, the training and administrative location for London Irish. Here we received the Key Factor Analysis […]

Premiership Scholarship Day 3 – Practice planning and delivery with Harlequins

The entire third day of the Premiership Coaching Development Scholarship was spent with the Harlequins men’s and women’s teams at their practice sessions at Surrey Sports Park. It was both massively challenging and greatly rewarding. The pace, organization, and simplicity of the practice was impressive. The sheer amount of productivity at the 90-minute men’s practice […]

Premiership Scholarship Day 2 – Coaching process and Rugby School

After getting some much-needed rest to shake off the jet lag from Day 1, we headed into the second day of the Premiership Rugby Coaching Development Scholarship with enthusiasm. The day began with a class focused on the role of the coach. The facilitator for this session was Gareth Hatherley-Hurford, the skills coach at London […]

Level 300 itinerary – Premiership Rugby coaching development scholarship

Back in January I was honored to be selected to join the 2019 spring class of the Premiership Rugby coaching development scholarship. Myself and the other scholarship recipients are starting to make our way from the USA to London, England for a 6-day rugby experience unlike any other. At the end of the trip, the […]

Gifted athletes can ruin your rugby program

Having a so-called “gifted” athlete on your rugby team can be great if they have the right attitude and fit well into your team culture. But gifted athletes can ruin your rugby program if they don’t have the commitment and personal values to match their skill at sport. For example, in the hyper-competitive area of pay-to-play […]

The one key component that every rugby coaching clinic needs

Over the years I’ve attended numerous rugby training sessions for everything from coaching to refereeing to administration. But the USA Rugby coaching clinic I attended last weekend at Taft High School in Chicago, IL was hands-down the best clinic I have ever attended. 

Teaching ruck technique with a tackle bag – part 1

There are many challenges to teaching new rugby players the technique of rucking. Not the least of which is the purpose of the ruck in the first place. In my experience, teaching ruck technique with a tackle bag helps overcome these challenges so that players can progress in their skill and understanding. Here’s a simple […]

Using themes to plan a rugby practice

As any coach can tell you, the success of a rugby practice correlates well to the amount of planning and preparation. And using themes to plan a rugby practice is a great organizational method that will improve your training sessions. Reduced preparation time Planning your rugby practice around a theme has many benefits, not the least of […]

How I started coaching rugby

Before I started playing rugby I looked for a team sport more challenging and exciting than touch football. With its contact, flow, and running score clock, rugby turned out to be just what I needed. So how did I go from being a weekend warrior to running practices three times a week at the local High […]