Rugby: The Atom Game

What a fantastic tool. I've found a few drills that are unfamiliar,...
Wes, Rugby Coach

DESCRIPTION

  • Quickly tell the players that when you blow you whistle and shout Atom, you will also shout a number to let the players know the size of the groups/atoms they need to get into. For example - if you shout Atom six - you want the players to get into groups of six. They should bind on in the groups to create a small circle of players.
  • In between atom calls the players run around the grid in different and random directions.
  • Some players may be left out of some groups/atoms, depending on the size of the groups when you call Atom. If those plays are a little put out by being left out, give them the opportunity to make the next Atom call.
  • Progression: Same as above, but in between Atom calls you play Simon Says e.g. let the players jog around but you call Simon Says put you hand on your head, Simon Says touch the ground with your right hand, Simon says jump up and clap your hands, ATOM 4! T
  • his should be fun, joke a little with the players and have fun with this. You may decide on minor outcomes for players that don't get into groups quick enough e.g. 2 press-ups. You are the referee, so use your judgment.

COACHING POINTS

Remember you don't have to focus on all of the following coaching points. Pick the points that are relevant to your session, or decide on your own!

  • Players really do need to listen to their coach and to each other!
  • This warm-up, if used at the start of the season, is a great opportunity for younger players to learn each other's names in small groups.
  • This warm-up is also about building the team, having them bind on will help build that bond.
  • Players should be silent when in their groups, you want to help your young players understand that when you talk - they listen.
  • Allow some players to act as leaders - making the atom calls.
  • Players should look out for their team-mates, it's not just about them.
  • Look out for leaders, players that care about other players and work hard to sort their atom out - you can learn a lot from watching them respond to this warm-up.

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MORE Warm Up DRILLS

3 Touch Kick

Split your players into two teams, giving one group of players a set of coloured bibs to set them apart, and quickly tell your players the following laws: We will be playing a rugby league style touch. When touched: set the ball down, stand over the ball, allow the scum-half to move the ball away from the point of contact. The defenders should stay on side following a touch, and should not compete for the ball. Any infringements in defence should result in the defending team conceding 10 Meters or possibly giving 1 or more extra touches to the attacking team. I'll leave this to your judgement depending on your team's age, skill level, and your session target/s. The attacking team can sustain three touches before they have to kick. Their kick should be as it would be in the game: a kick to touch, a kick for territory, or a kick that can be regained e.g. a grubber kick. The defenders should behave as they would in a real game. Quick put in's from the touchlines replace lineouts. Defenders who take the ball from an attacking kick should counter attack. A forth touch results in a turn over. The Scrum Half has a maxium of 5 seconds to move the ball from the point of touch. A ball kicked directly to touch from outside the attacking teams 22, or where the ball has been taken into the 22 by the attacking team and then kicked into touch - will result in a turn over with play starting on the five meter line closest to where the kick was made. The defence should be 10 meters back. A ball kicked from inside the attacking teams 22 can go directly to touch, as long as the attacking team did not carry the ball into their own 22 before the kick. The resulting put in will be to the opposition from where the ball has went into touch. Quick put-in's are enoucraged, if not possible the ball is played from the 5 meter line with the defence 10 meters back. Give points for quick put ins that work. Feel free to play with any of noted laws, let us know the law variations that work for you!

Warm Up

Bang & Bingo

Set up: the cones as shown with a cone 10 meters each side of the posts on the try line. This will mark where the ball will be passed from (feeder) preferably from a scrum half. Divide the group into 3 and ask them to stand in single file behind each cone. The ball is fed from a position alternately from either side of the post. This will encourage the players to scan, communicate and to be expectant of the ball. The players on the cones opposite the posts will either be the 1st receiver or the BANG option runner. The BANG runner is always running an out to in, or up to in line to fix the 2nd defender. The players on the middle cone will receive the ball in the BINGO (pull back) option outside the ‘outside’ post or just in behind the BANG player. The BINGO players should run and an arced run to receive the ball outside the outer post. The BINGO player should try to straighten up prior to receiving or on receiving the ball. Progression: Get 2 players or coaches to stand in front of the posts with 2 different coloured cones in their hands on their hips. The cones will represent the ‘hips’ of the 2nd defender. The aim is to encourage the 1st receiver to scan, look, and make a quick decision (choice of pass) depending on what the defender is doing. If the 1st receivers sees the ‘inside’ cone on the 2nd defender then they must assume the defenders hips are turned OUT and make a short pass to the BANG runner. If the 1st receivers sees the ‘outside’ cone on the 2nd defender then they must assume the defenders hips are turned IN and make a PULL BACK pass to the BINGO runner.

Warm Up

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