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Junior Rugby Coaching: Continuity

Updated: Apr 10, 2019

This was an aspect that occurred to me when coaching changes happen. Be it a head coach or assistant coach.

Definition of continuity

a: uninterrupted connection, succession, or union… its disregard of the continuity between means and ends …— Sidney Hook

b: uninterrupted duration or continuation especially without essential change

World Rugby provide plenty of guidelines and principles for a coach to fall back on that contributes towards continuity. The fundamentals of the game, the principles of the game, approach to coaching plus the literature to back it up. Just like players developing good playing fundamentals, World Rugby Coaching courses can provide good coaching fundamentals. As most of the coaches here are Level 1 (Basic Course), it certainly helps in continuity.

It's easier to grasp the skills and concepts of that has been executed within that particular group.

However, I discovered another more fundamental element in ensuring there is continuity.

Respect. Yup. Respect.

1. Recognise the good work done and build on it.

2. Be open to new ideas and possibilities.

3. Respect going Both ways.

Me (red), Coach Rosli (White T Shirt) and Coach King (Yellow Shirt) at one of the many friendlies organised. Coach Rosli would eventually lead U16 and Coach King with U14. It was a continuous process of working out our strengths and have it complement each other. Not easy but respect of each other played a key factor.

“Dillan, Can you help out with Coaching the U13s at the Highland Games?”

Anette, Cobrats Major Domo.

In 2017, The U13 regular coaches were not available for the Highland Games. So, the group of parents/coaches (Wayne and Tatt King) that stepped in felt they needed a little help. Though, I had a little more head coaching experience, Wayne and King knew the team better. From the get go, the kids were motivated and a great mind set to play but a little raw skills wise. Obviously, Wayne and King were on to something and I had to acknowledge that fact and worked in my ideas as best as possible. Take advantage of the positives aspects.

Highland Games game results weren’t great but the end takeaway was progress all around. A continuous step forward for the coaches, parents and most importantly, the players. Continuity.

Note: Coach Rosli aka Young and Restless, has much greater amount of rugby experience than I do as he played, coached and ran his own rugby team much much earlier. When he decided to join the club, he understood continuity and respected my space to run the group while slowly adding his. Acknowledging his experience, I accepted his input with open arms.

Coach Tatt King was certainly new to coaching but behind his mild manner lies a man passionate about the game and possessing a high rugby IQ. Always watchful and always studying, his analysis always sparks me into looking at the game with another viewpoint.

Both Gentlemen have brought the teams to another level.


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