CrestClean and LeslieRugby strengthening junior rugby
The CrestClean LeslieRugby Junior Rugby Team Coaching Programme is helping strengthen junior rugby in New Zealand.
The programme is aimed at junior rugby coaches and/or dads and mums who are interested in coaching the game in the future. It promotes fundamental skill development and makes it easier for junior team coaches to deliver a high value rugby practice. The programme also ensures players are given an enjoyable and beneficial experience.
During the coaching clinics, which are run by former Highlanders and Scotland Captain John Leslie, a team of 12-year-olds demonstrates 14 core skills while he explains his coaching philosophies and tips for keeping the energy high and the game fun for kids.
Since March this year, 26 clinics have been held at local rugby clubs and schools in Dunedin, Central and South Otago, Nelson, Blenheim, Picton, Timaru, Geraldine, Tinwald, Rakaia, Pukekohe, Karaka, Manurewa, Papakura, Onewhero, North Shore and Auckland.
The response from each clinic has been overwhelmingly positive, says John.
“Some of the most favorable comments have come from ex-rugby superstars who are now coaching their kids junior rugby teams, such as Jeff Wilson and Pita Alatini,” he says. “These guys are really excited about the content and the value that the programme delivers.”
At a recent clinic, former All Black and rugby commentator Jeff Wilson could not praise the programme enough. “This is the best content I have ever seen for junior coaches. I will be using it, so should every junior coach wanting the best for their kids and to make it easy for themselves.”
The clinics are all about making it easy for junior coaches to deliver a great, high value training session that is fun and has the kids moving full blast for an hour, says John.
“The core rugby skills of ball running, taking ball into contact, ruck, catching and passing and tackling are the focus of the training. There is also really cool rugby specific fitness content. If this junior rugby team coaching success plan is followed correctly, each kid will practice between 300 and 400 skill attempts in one training. This is super high value for the kids and it is fun too.”
The objective is to show keen parents how to train kids so they are rugby safe, confident and powerful so that they enjoy their rugby training and games.
“It confirms the more you practice with good technique, the better you become. The session is set up for rapid fire drill that keeps the kids engaged and skill drilling,” he says.
“This is a specific programme that works,” he says. “Junior team coaches are top people who give their time and energy to their communities. I have learnt a lot from my eight years of coaching kids and all the tips I’ve picked up from my rugby mates. My goal is to share this information and hopefully help out other coaches and kids.”
National commercial cleaning company CrestClean have supported the programme by producing a pocket-sized Skills and Drills Coaching booklet, which is given to all coaches who turn up and register on the day.
This month clinics will be held in Wellington, Levin, Wanganui, Taranaki, Northland, North Harbour and Auckland.
“The clinics are really filling a need in our local communities, helping parents and kids have fun with the sport and be more healthy and active. We’re so proud to support them,” CrestClean’s Managing Director Grant McLauchlan says.
Northland: Sunday, June 21, 10am Kerikeri Sports Ground and 4.30pm Northcote Rugby Club.
Auckland: Monday, June 22, 2.40pm King’s School, Remuera and 6.30pm at Pakuranga RFC. Tuesday, June 23, 3.20pm at Saint Kentigern College and 6.30pm at Suburbs RFC. Wednesday, June 24, 6pm at Ponsonby RFC. Thursday, June 25, 6pm Auckland Marist Rugby Club.