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Tuesday, January 31, 2006


General discussions: Dreaming the rugby dream

The stadium is packed, the atmosphere electrifying, conditions are perfect for rugby, and not any rugby, WC final against the All Blacks. You are sitting in the stands right above the tunnel. The crowd starts roaring, you know they are coming out. The stadium erupts, the teams form a line, Nikosi Sekele starts ringing out, your pulse is racing, the adrenalin levels are making you dizzy and your chest can’t swell big enough. There he stands next to Madiba, singing the anthem, wearing the Green and Gold and....................................... his your SON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Which father hasn’t pictured this in his mind? His laaitie is only 4 years old, but you have already seen him score tries, kick conversions and holding that cup. Where do you start? How do you help him to develop the skills? Well here is the answer.

Rugby skills for 4-5 year olds

Rough play is popular among this age group and can be a useful way of fine-tuning physical skills. This is the time to encourage social, intellectual and physical development as learning the basic skills lays the foundation for grasping more complicated sports and activities.

What a four to five-year old can do:

• Very little or no developed eye-foot coordination
• Children of this age have a very low attention span. Encouraging enthusiasm is more important at this stage than any skill development
• Play with balls but has difficulty kicking, catching and throwing accurately

Rugby activities for four to five-year olds

The four to five-year-olds can practise the basic skills of rugby as suggested below. It is important for the child to have much success and fun while doing the exercises.
The following pieces of equipment will be required: a large plastic ball, a size 3 Rugby ball, flat beacons, a pillow and a mattress. These activities would be best executed on a field but the back garden will suffice. These activities have been selected so that they can be practised with Dad, Mom and siblings.


• Ball handling
• Running with the ball
• Passing
• Catching
• Picking up/putting down ball while running
• Kicking (Punt and Place kick)

Ball handling:

1. Use large plastic ball, stand with feet wide apart and roll ball in and out between the feet in the figure of eight.
2. Use rugby ball (size 3) and pass it around own waist without dropping it.

Practical suggestion:

Make activities fun by saying that Spiderman wants to spin a web around their feet and waists – see how many times the web can go round without dropping it - challenge them.

Running with ball:

Partners stand 10 m apart, one with and one without ball. On the count of 3 they run towards each other, give the ball into the hands of the partner and run to the opposite end.

Practical suggestion:

Hold the ball on the side that the partner runs by on – make it easy for your partner.


1. Work with a partner - place four sets of cones 2 m apart at intervals of about 3m (see below). Partner 1 passes to partner 2 at (a), they run to (b) and then partner 2 passes back to 1, they run to (c) and 1 passes back to 2 and so on. Start off using the plastic ball and then introduce the rugby ball.

Practical suggestion:

Rugby is a team sport so you need to make things easy for your partner. Pass the ball from your hip and aim for your partner’s belly button. Watch partner throughout and expect the ball at the next set of holders. As a challenge, the partners could see how many times they can do this without dropping the ball or they can time themselves and see how quickly they can complete the task. When the rugby ball is introduced, show the child how to grip the ball properly. Important to turn head and shoulders to look at partner as he passes.


1. High lobbed balls – parent stands 2 m away and throws ball with an arc into the arms of the child. The child holds arms like an ice cream scoop and squeezes the ball once it is safely in his arms.

Practical suggestion:

Start off using the plastic ball and make it easy for the child. Later introduce the rugby ball but make sure that the ball is thrown into the arms. As they progress, teach them to run and move in under the ball – vary the height of the arc.

2. Waist high balls – teach child to watch, expect and stretch hands out to oncoming ball.

Practical suggestion:

Pass ball to the left and right side of the child. Increase the distance between parent and child as they progress. Also challenge them by seeing how many catches out of ten are caught successfully.
Picking up and putting down of ball:

1. Partners stand 10 m apart, place two balls half way between them. On the count of 3 they run towards balls, pick one up and run to their partner’s place and put ball down as one would when scoring a try.

Practical suggestion:

Make it challenging by seeing who can pick up the ball and get to their partner’s spot first (shout, “try” when ball is dotted down)


1. Punt kick – hold plastic ball between hands and lean forward, best foot back, drop ball and kick it before the ball hits the ground.

Practical suggestion:

Introduce the rugby ball only later on - teach them to kick the ball on the rounded part of the ball and not on the pointed sides (shoes to be worn if the foot stings). Challenge the child by seeing how far and high they can kick the ball. Later introduce a target for them to kick at e.g. into the parent’s arms/a circle of beacons etc.
2. Place kick - place plastic ball on holder, take two steps back and kick ball off holder.

Practical suggestion:

Teach the child to kick the ball on the spot where the ball rests on the beacon (i.e. under the ball - in order to gain height) and also to keep their heads down while kicking. Introduce the rugby ball later – cut a larger hole in the top of one of the beacons to stabilise the ball. Challenge the child by pasting strips of masking tape resembling a set of rugby posts on the garage door. Let them try and kick the ball over and through the “posts”. Place the ball in different spots to make it more difficult or easier for them.

Activities supplied by Playball. For more information on Playball search

Source: Health24


Please print this and give it to your dad.
lol @ donner

Do you do this with your boys too?
Maybe I can teach my grils this.

She already roars "Papa se Leeus" when she sees rugby on tv!!!

Youngest is a boy and only eighteen months, but we're starting.
I'm yet to work outwhether my eldest has ball skills, but she does like kicking a soccer ball. I just have to teach her it's not cool.

Hopefully she has a tennis talent so my wife and I can retire when she's 16!!!!!

Ja lets hope she doesn't take after her father. :-))))
if she's going to look like anna kournikova davids we should get to know each other better...  
I wonder what Heksie is doing right now.  
donner, my dad passed away last year, i would appreciate it if you dont make such jokes again. thank you.  
reading these comments  

i hope i got you with that one...

Buy a bunch of roses when you go home. That's a start.
This is why my 5 year old does playball, and my 1 and a half year old to start soon. Shit, I need a son, Playball won't help the girls! Mind you, my step mother nicknamed the smallest Schalk, cos she has a huge bush of blonde (more white!) hair and looks like schalk when she runs around. She also never gets hurt, is a bit of a bully and the only time that she's not running around is when she's sleeping. She doesn't even watch tv to keep her silent for a couple of minutes. But I prefer it that way, I don't want children that just sits in front of the tv.  
They should give these excersizes to some Springboks, Gus, Jorrie & SickNote. Although Sicknote will be excused from kicking practice.

Well done, your intro. is so true and now the method has been explained. Go for it you youngsters with dreams.
Thanks jj,

I knew you would appreciate it.
Cool blog. However I am looking for info on Mesothelioma or Mesothelioma Lawyers. I would also like to find info on Asbestos and Asbestos Lawyers  
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