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How can I overcome my child's fear of tackling?

How can I overcome my child's fear of tackling?

Hi Dan,

For kids who are not used to the sport, it can be a bit of a shock that they are not prepared for mentally.

I think that you should take some of the focus of the skill of actually making a tackle and talk about it in terms of an aspect of the game and why we do it. I.e we need to stop the opponents scoring a try!

Tackling is a lot about mentality, you could start by watching more professional rugby with them because, 1. It will start to create role models for them, people who are not scared of tacking and 2. You can see that these players tackle hard and don't get hurt.

Explain to your child that people who are aggressive, hard tacklers don't get hurt, it is the weak 'scared' tacklers who get hurt.

Say that we are all descendants Mohammed Ali, and he floated like a Jason Robertson and stung like a Courtney Lawes.

I hope this helps! Here is a drill to get any player used to the contact element.

1v1 Clap Tackle - Warm up

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Description:
  • Groups of 2.
  • Everyone find some space.
  • Stand opposite your partner.
  • One of the players (attacker) use footwork and move arround.
  • The other (defender), try to keep as close as they can to the moving player.
  • The attackers claps at a point of his choice, this is when the defender makes a shoulders on contact.
  • Low Impact.
  • Shoulders on. 

Coaching Points:
  • Keep on toes.
  • Small steps.
  • Boxer stance. 
  • Foot in close as possible to Attacker. 
  • Drive not dive - stay close to attacker as you can dont want to have to dive for tackle. 
  • Wider base for leverage and greater flexibility to reach tackle. 

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  • search our library of 1100+ rugby drills
  • create your own professional coaching plans
  • or access our tried and tested plans