Jonathan McMurtry shares an outline of his session to the Nudgee Coaching Forum where the theme was Coopetition.

The art of coaching is knowing how and when to communicate, and how this varies from individual. Work on empathetic relationships and having a better understanding of your athletes or players as this will allow you to modify your environment or approaches for greater impact and understanding.

Know your players, know their story, know their context and then put it into practice.

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SRU National Coaching Conference 2016

Scottish Rugby Coach Development will host their annual National Coaching Conference at BT Murrayfield on Sunday 15 May.

Scottish Rugby Coach Development will host their annual National Coaching Conference at BT Murrayfield on Sunday 15 May to provide School, Youth & Adult Coaches with an update on technical and tactical themes.
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“the purpose of this research was to develop a detailed description of leadership in contemporary Canadian Olympic medal-winning sport to better understand how Olympic podium performances are developed”.

The authors sought to understand the coaching leadership that preceded podium performances at the 2010 winter Olympic Games by interviewing coaches and athletes who together won a medal at the Games and to uncover leadership themes within the context of these interviews.

Three overarching themes and ten sub-themes were identified:

Theme One – Demanding Leadership: managing and leading directly and decisively. General consensus supports the notion that the efforts of coaches at this level are enormous. Communication to both athletes and support staff was described as clear and specific.

  1. Directive Coach Behaviour – frank and concise communications directing clear expectations of both athletes and support team.
  2. Decisive Conductor – coach seen as the leader and manager of the athlete, sport scientists and support staff, ultimately making  the tough decisions.

Theme Two – Relational Leadership: creating and strengthening individual connections.

Coach-Athlete Relationship – respect and trust developed over time. Coaches should know their athletes both as competitors and as individuals as well.

  1. Coaches as Teachers – at this level, the athletes felt they were learning more about their sport, their life and themselves at the Olympic preparatory stage from their coaches.
  2. Role Modelling – coaches emphasize the importance of leading by example, modeling the desired behaviours and attitudes (calm and confidence).

Theme Three – Solution-focused Leadership: relentless searching for ways to improve training and performance.

  1. Vision – building a long-term fluid and adaptive plan that focuses on specific information needed to perform on demand at their best against the world’s best.
  2. Structured Learning Culture – coach creates and maintains a stable learning environment that allows the athlete to develop to their best. Mistakes in this environment are used as opportunities for learning and positive growth.
  3. It Takes a Village – each coach and athlete in the study claimed it was the cumulative work of a support team (naming a variety of family, assistants and experts) that makes a gold medal performance; the coaches’ role being to keep their support team on task and aligned with the performance plan.
  4. Role Clarity and Recognition – provide clarity and recognition of each individual’s role within the performance context.
  5. Analytic Tenacity – a devotion to analysis and “an unending search for the details that would make the difference between a good performance and a podium performance”.

An important outcome of this research was the proposal of a new research model of Olympic podium performance based upon the three main themes of the research derived from the original integrated research model as well as the sub-themes that developed out of the study.


RugbyRight – Online Training Course

Scottish Rugby recently launched a new online training course, RugbyRight, for all coaches, teachers and referees, focusing on improving player welfare and safety standards.

The RugbyRight course replaces the Rugby Ready practical course for season 2015-16, which educated over 4500 coaches annually.

The course places a strong emphasis on concussion management, anti-doping and safe tackle techniques. A law application update, which focuses on clarifications for season 2015/16, is also included.

The online course has been created on an online resource hub, which every coach in Scotland will have access to, by clicking https://scottishrugbytraining.litmos.com/self-signup/, and using the access code RR15-16. Once registered, you can access the RugbyRight course on a mobile device by downloading the Litmos LMS app on Apple, Android or Windows devices.

For those coaches who are new to the game, and would benefit from a practical workshop, Scottish Rugby will be running Start Rugby Coaching workshops. These workshops have been organised in each region, with further info available here (http://www.scottishrugby.org/start-rugby-coaching).

In line with policy, all coaches, teachers and referees will be required to complete the RugbyRight online course before Saturday 31 October.

For further information, please contact rugby.right@sru.org.uk.

Advanced Coaching Mini Rugby (Pilot)

The (Pilot) Advanced Coaching Mini Rugby course (£50 inc VAT) is taking place at BT Murrayfield on Sunday 16, Sunday 23 August and Sunday 18 October.

The Coaching Mini Rugby (Advanced) course acts as a progression for UKCC Level 1 qualified coaches, who work with players between P4-P7. It is aimed at lead coaches within mini rugby, and those who are responsible for leading and managing rugby programmes at their club or school (minimum 2 years’ experience).

This course is designed to develop expertise in coaching mini rugby, through the understanding and implementation of current coaching theory around coaching children. Through your work you will develop planning and delivery skills, as well as game coaching, game sense and dual goal coaching abilities to ensure players learn in an active, purposeful, enjoyable and safe environment.

Apply for the Advanced Coaching Children Rugby course: http://www.scottishrugby.org/coaching-mini-rugby-advanced