Values of Rugby - Level 2

Rugby Union has a code of conduct (the Charter - see below) on how players, officials, club administrators and spectators are expected to behave. Because of the physical confrontation which exists in the Game, this code of conduct has evolved over many years to ensure that whatever physicality takes place on the field of play remains there.

It is of paramount importance that the ethos of the game is maintained by teaching young people coming into the game the values which have made the sport unique.

Therefore, it is advisable that those involved in teaching and playing the game should operate within a code of conduct which should be agreed and signed up to by those concerned.

Coaches’ code of conduct

Coaching must demonstrate a high degree of honesty, integrity and competence. The need for coaches to understand and act on their responsibilities is of critical importance to Rugby, as is the need to protect the key concept of participation for fun and enjoyment, as well as achievement.

The key principles relating to the interaction between coaches and players are:

  • Rights - you must respect and champion the right of every individual to participate in sport.
  • Relationships - coaches must develop a relationship with the players based on openness, honesty, mutual trust and respect.
  • Responsibilities - personal standards - you, as a coach, must demonstrate proper personal behaviour and conduct at all times.
  • Responsibilities - professional standards - in order to maximise benefits and minimise the risks to players, coaches must attain a high level of competence through qualifications and a commitment to ongoing training that ensures safe and correct practice.

In order to ensure these principles are fulfilled:

  • Don't overload young players with demands, technical information and tactics - remember they are children and they are playing Rugby for FUN.
  • Don't overplay the better players - include everyone. All players need and deserve the equal opportunity to play and to rest.
  • Welcome all players into their relevant age group irrespective of numbers in that age group.
  • Don’t discriminate on the grounds of gender, race, colour, disability, religion. Do not treat some young people more favourably than others.
  • Players develop at different times and in different ways - make allowances for their physical, emotional and mental maturity and development. Ensure the activities you do are appropriate to the age, maturity and ability of the players.
  • Ensure equipment and facilities are safe and appropriate to the age and ability of the players.
  • Ensure that contact skills are taught in a safe, secure manner paying due regard to the physical development of the players.
  • Never allow young players to train or play when they are injured.
  • Winning isn't everything - teach your players to enjoy taking part and performing to the best of their ability. Encourage each player to reach his or her potential.
  • Never abuse, shout at, criticise or ridicule children for making mistakes or losing a game. Do not cause a player to lose-self esteem by embarrassing, humiliating or undermining them.
  • Motivate your players through positive feedback and constructive criticism
  • Be organised - establish a structure for the season, prepare a coaching plan for each session, have the appropriate kit. Above all, communicate to players, parents and fellow coaches to set expectations
  • Make sure players develop an understanding of the rules and Laws of the game, that they respect opponents, team mates, coaches and officials
  • Never question an official's judgement or honesty
  • Ensure players and parents’ behaviour is appropriate and in keeping with the spirit of the game
  • Never enter the playing arena (the pitch) during a match unless specifically invited to do so by the match official. (This does not apply in games for younger players where a coach takes part in the running of the game on the pitch, with the consent of the match official)

Additional information on the Values of Rugby can be found here:

(you will need to choose your language)

World Rugby Playing Charter

Values of Rugby - Level 1

Values of Rugby - Level 3

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Introduction