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Hi {sForename},

Welcome to Better Rugby Coaching Issue 102
(Please forward to friends and colleagues without cutting, thanks)

What "rugby netball" teaches your players

Rugby netball, when mentioned to the players, tends to bring a
few groans. Actually, from someone like me who used to teach netball(!) it is better than basketball as a means of teaching spatial awareness, footwork and go forward. So here is a fresh version for you to try, great for a warm up for ten minutes.

  • 20m x 20m pitch. Create circle/box of about 2m x 2m at each end.
  • Two equal teams of no more than 8 a side.
  • KEY RULE: Each player must be marked by another player. No swapping in the game.
  • Any type of pass is allowed, but no pass can be more than 5m.
  • No contact. Defenders must be three feet from the ball carrier. Any closer and they are penalised with one push up whilst the play continues.

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  • No running with the ball.
  • If the ball goes to the ground, the ball goes to the team who were not the last to touch it.
  • To score the ball must be caught in the box area. The box area is out of bounds to the defence, and can only be occupied by an attacker for 3 seconds.
  • Any offence is an immediate ball to the other side from where the offence occurred.

Extension rules:

  • 2 players are nominated as defenders only on each side and are not allowed out of their half. This will free up space for both sides, since the man markers will have to remain with their defenders (in effect becoming outright attackers).
  • Once in possession a side must move the ball out their half within 10 seconds.

Skills to look for:

  • Getting into space, away from defender – use side steps, twists, changes of pace.
  • Accurate passing in traffic.
  • Different types of passing.
  • Clear communication e.g. use names; use hand signals.
  • Working quickly, problem solving.


In next week’s issue: “LOMU” from 50 Great Backs Moves


Dan Cottrell, Editor

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