Rookie Rugby Skill Cards

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Receive and Carry

Difficulty: Beginner
  • Offense
  • Passing


To have players effectively receive a pass from a teammate and move into space.

What to Coach

Learning how to properly catch a rugby ball is very important for player safety and to keep the continuity of the game.

Set a Target

  • Maintain a square orientation to the field by keeping hips and chest parallel to the try line.
  • Form the letter “W” in front of the body with both hands by placing thumbs together and spreading fingers wide.
  • Keep hands relaxed, no robots!

Reach for the Ball

  • Keep your eye on the ball all the way from the thrower to your hands
  • Reach for the ball. Catching the ball against your body can result in fumbles off of the body or an interception from the other team.

Park the Ball

  • Resist the temptation to bring the ball into the body. Keep the arms and ball out away from the body, where they caught the pass.
  • This leaves the the arms in position for a quick continuation pass. This also has the benefit of drawing the defense’s eyes away from the player’s hips.

Ball Carry

  • The first step in rugby is always forward
  • Keep two hands on the ball at all times, this keeps the options of kicking, passing or running available.

Coaching Notes

Game Progressions

  1. Have players work on receiving the ball from different directions. Form a circle around one player and provide each player in the circle a ball. Call out different players to pass to the person in the center.
  2. Allow players to work on receiving different types of passes. Have players start five yards apart receiving pop passes and them work up to about eight yards apart receiving a spin pass

Key Concepts

  1. Make sure players always move forward after receiving the ball.
  2. Make sure players are forming the letter “W” with their hands, away from their chest.
  3. Always have players call for the ball, even when practicing

Log Activity

Log Activity (New)

  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Please provide a brief summary of the session and any additional information relevant for reporting. Things to include could be the number of volunteers present, types of resources provided, and follow-up/next steps.