Rugby: Pressure Cooker

Sportplan rugby has played a large role in my team's love for the...
Heather, Rugby Coach

DESCRIPTION

  1. 4 players stand on the middle cones in the grid, avoiding the corner cones. The 2 players at the top and the bottom of the grid will have a ball. The players on the sides of the grid will have one ball between them.
  2. The 5th player will be the ball carrier.
  3. The ball carrier starts at the top of the grid facing the bottom. Moving forward they will take a pass off one of the middle players and pass the ball onto the other middle player. They will then collect a pass off the player in front of them, before popping the ball back to them. They will then turn and once again collect a pass off one of the middle players before moving it on to the other middle player. They then take a pass off the top player before popping it back and starting the exercise again.
  4. They keep going until told to switch with another player.
  5. The player in the middle can turn and flick the ball to the static players at the top and bottom of the grid, as well as popping the ball.

COACHING POINTS

The tempo of this exercise must be high as a skill is only a skills when it can be preformed under pressure, and this exercise applies pressure.

Ball carriers work at a speed they are initially comfortable with, building more in more speed and faster decision making as they go - while retaining passing quality.

Passes from the carrier and the static players are weighted correctly in terms of speed, distance, and accuracy. Spin passes are not used when they do not need to be.

The ball carrier uses effective, efficient, and encouraging communication to ensure that they receive the ball when they want it - and to ensure that they have enough times and space to make their pass without having to pull back the pass at the middle station.

Players on the cones use good communication to encourage the runner - also helping with the timing and origin of the pass. You'll find that players will be working hard to scan the grid, and some may be a little like a rabbit in headlights - confused!

Ball carriers pass, and pop the ball. The pass is only complete when caught.

When passing, ball carriers draw the pass, in one motion, across their body.

Receivers present targets and have their hands up, ready to catch.

PROGRESSION

Increase pressure by having the ball carrier do an 'up/down' or 'burpie' following their pop at the top and bottom of the grid.

Add a defender who simply gets in the way and closes space. Their job is not to tackle, just to apply reasonable pressure.

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