Just as the 1st and 2nd XV take to the field at Senior School, our Grade 4 and 5 boys and girls are also starting to get into the game of rugby. This week, the young students started their training for mini-rugby, a variation of the traditional game that is safe for the smaller students to play.
“It’s very exciting,” says assistant coach Jane Rees, who will be working with Mr. Spencer Robinson, a certified Level 3 rugby coach who has coached in national competitions.
In mini-rugby, teams of nine players attempt to carry the ball over their opponent’s goal line while the other team tries to prevent this by tackling the ball carrier. The game emphasizes teamwork and building basic skills such as running and passing.
“We have 25 students participating this year,” says Ms. Rees. “About half of the students played last year and the other half are brand new to the game.”
To help the more inexperienced players get into the game, proper tackling techniques are taught, moving in progression from light contact to full contact as the skills of the players increase. All players, boys and girls, are divided into weight divisions for safety reasons, and teams from other schools will be divided in a similar way on game days.
“The students are enthusiastic and keen to play,” says Mrs. Rees. “We have lots of fun.”
The season will consist of two practices per week, a number of exhibition games with other schools and participation in the 37th Annual Greater Victoria Mini Rugby Tournament on May 8th.