Rugby Coaching Blog | Professional Rugby Advice & Coaching

Top flanker cleanout drill by David Clarke
November 29, 2010, 10:06 am
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby Drills | Tags: , , , ,

A very simple rucking drill from George Smith, posted on the eliterugbycoaching Youtube page.

Easy to set up and observe, so you can concentrate on the developing the key points of the ruck cleanout.

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Realignment and committing drill by David Clarke

Here is a realignment drill which I found on YouTube. Simple to set up and easy to run. Note that the players are realigning and then committing defenders.

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Day eight of August pre season training tips: tackling by David Clarke

August 8


You have got to start tackling at some stage in pre season, but when? Why not work on the elements of tackling, breaking it down into component parts. Then put it all together closer to the first proper match.

If you have six sessions before your first game then try this out:
Session 1: Footwork for tackling. Working on getting correctly aligned to make front on or side on tackles. You can use touch rugby or tag rugby where the player has two hand touch or tag the ball carrier on the hips.
Session 2: Shoulders in. In a very small area, players work on their shoulder contact with the ball carrier.
Session 3: Grip work. Grip and holding onto the ball carrier. A static ball carrier is gripped and then starts to move.
Session 4: Pairs. Working together to make tackles. Low impact, walking rugby, with one player focusing on ball.
Session 5: Rough and tumble. Five metre box, 3 v 3 full contact, with a turnover and restart at the end of the box if a ruck or maul forms.
Session 6: Full tackling session.

You can revise each session at the start of the next session to build into one full session.

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Out of the gloom, my rugby can prosper by David Clarke
January 18, 2010, 2:05 pm
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby Coaching, Rugby Skills | Tags: , , , , , ,

As I look whimsically out of my window at the fog covering the snow capped hills outside Swansea, it is hard to remember a time when one of my teams actually played a game of rugby.

It has been a tough few months in the region, with terrible wet weather in November and December and then a bad cold snap that has covered the whole of the UK.

Amongst the gloom, the excitement of the Six Nations is brightening the rugby land, with players staking their claim to World Cup squad places. It won’t be long before we have Super 14 rugby as well.

But let’s forget thos bright lights for a moment and concentrate on our own rugby. Here are three ways I want my rugby to prosper:

1. Clearer instruction

Any exercise will be understood quicker because I have communicated what I want more effectively. I will pander to all the learning styles.

2. More intensity

I will identify exact moments when exercises and drills will be more intense and make sure that the players respond. Short bursts of high intensity.

3. More fun

Following on from last year, I will introduce more games and competitions into training.


Now to action it. I can’t wait.

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Excellent rucking drill by David Clarke

The coaches at London Irish are full of excellent ideas. Here is a video of a drill created by David Williams and London Irish Head Coach Toby Booth.

It is quick to set up, interesting and slightly unusual. It gives you an excellent chance to concentrate on honing good technique.

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Looping and support drill by David Clarke
October 9, 2009, 1:13 pm
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby Skills, Rugby Training | Tags: , ,

A nice little looping and support drill to hone passing skills.

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Body angle and placement drill by David Clarke

Western Force, a Super 14 franchise in Australia, have produced an excellent series of videos on their website.

Here is an exercise which can be used as part of a contact session. I think it will take you about three minutes to use in the session as it is, but you can then develop it with more defenders and attackers.

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