Rugby - Fitness and watch that tackle! Image credit and source - Copyright: ostill - Shutterstock, Inc
The Rugby World Cup is a great showcase of careers in the sports industry at the highest level.
FirstStep.me spoke to Alie Brand of Stellenbosch Rugby Academy about how individuals should prepare for a career within the industry and what to watch during the world cup!
How should individuals approach a game like rugby with long term career plans?
The explanation to this subject is very extensive. We suggest that you log onto the websites of the various rugby unions, like World Rugby, Irish Rugby Union or Scottish Rugby which provides information on long term player development strategy.
Learn to tackle!
Starting at grassroots level. A Tackler starts on their knees with an attacker walking past. This progresses to standing, walking, jogging, etc. Emphasis on the right technique of a boxer stance, head behind (cheek to cheek), power step (same foot and shoulder), leg-drive and pulling with arms. When progressing to jogging (even with senior players) start with an attacker and a tackler moving towards each other, attacker stepping to one side (forcing the tackler to get the right foot in front, head behind, etc.), the tackler using only shoulder (no arms) contact, then progressing to using only one arm and grip, and thirdly both arms, grip and pull.
At a senior level - how should individuals manage themselves?
Log onto Boksmart Rugby - Safety Programme. It is a practical guide from the SA Rugby Union to play smart rugby. Look at their Boksmart Fitness testing and the physical profiling of players.
Rugby World Cup Role models and what to watch...
Try and keep track of each individual position on the field as it has its own requirements and role within the team. Look at the way the player in a certain position performs their duties - running lines, scrumming, jumping in lineouts, tackling, etc. Also how the individual conducts themself, e.g discipline, work ethic, communication, courage, positioning in defensive lines, respect for the referee and opponents etc.
Rugby is one of the toughest sports in the world - what sort of individual is needed to take the field of play?
Personal qualities of a rugby player
Ability to work in a team
Confidence – belief in oneself, coach, team and game plan
Good relationship with coach and team mates
Self-control in unstructured situations
Aggression in contact situations
Making the right choices
Work ethics during practices and games
Skill – good handler, tackler, runner
Calm/cool headed in pressure situations
Specialist in a position
The Rugby Site
Dan Cottrell's Better Rugby Coaching
Irish Rugby Union