I had the pleasure of traveling to the East Coast last weekend where I made a visit to the University of Connecticut Husky Rugby Club. The weather held out for my trip and all of our training sessions were able to be played outside without any snow. Unfortunately we could not get around the cold temperatures.
All the sessions were held at Pomfret Prep School just a short trip from the Uconn Campus. More than 30 members of the Rugby club came to be put through their paces.
After the first hour of our first session together, I found myself in front of many confused faces and blank looks. A good sign that everything was going as planned. Rugby is a game of thinking and adapting. As players and coaches, we cannot operate as robots. Slowly, but surely, these blank looks turned to bright light bulbs. By the end of the session, decision making in the drills was improving.
By the last session on day two of the weekend camp, the players had the grips on new concepts and trends. Players were looking up, seeing the spaces, and moving the ball fluidly, changing the focus of attack. At times, I think they even surprised themselves.
It was a lot of fun coaching such a great group of guys. Each was willing to adapt and grow as a rugby player. I wish them all the best in the upcoming season and I look forward to keeping a close eye on their developments and watching their program grow.
Before I returned home to Seattle, I made a brief trip into New York City to catch up with Play Rugby USA. Timing could not have been better. I stepped off the train at Grand Central Station into a sea of green hats and Shamrocks. I had forgotten it was St Paddy’s weekend. With streets blocked off for the parade, my short walk to my meeting turned into a more than entertaining trip around Manhattan!
Thank you to all those whose made the trip possible and to my hosts in Connecticut and New York.