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Coach Development and Courses

From the Rugby Development Desk 

Please keep checking this page for all of the information regarding Rugby and Coach Development within the Thames Valley Rugby Union Province. If you have any questions then please contact me by phone on 07 862 6352, 027 243 8656 or by e-mail at rdovalleyrugby@yahoo.co.nz
Bill Cooksley

Please see below the proposed dates for the 2016 Rugbysmart courses. In 2016 we will be holding a series of evenings that will include the annual rugby safety messages. Clubs must be reminded that it is compulsory for all coaches, assistant coaches and anyone involved in the coaching process of a team (specialist coaches, trainers and even the person ‘who just helps out every now and then etc) to attend these safety and registration evenings every year. It is also recommended that team managers attend as well – particularly if there isn’t an assistant coach for the team. If a person is found to be involved in the coaching process of a team and has not attended the relevant safety presentation then – under New Zealand Rugby Policy – that team must be withdrawn from the competition until compliance has been achieved.

Day and Date


Monday 29th February


Monday 7th March  


Monday 14th March  


Monday 21st March  



7pm – 8.30pm


7pm – 8.30pm


7pm – 8.30pm


7pm – 8.30pm



      Paeroa West RFC


Tairua RFC


Cobras RFC


Thames RFC


Compulsory Coaching Courses Explained

Coaching rugby is all about enjoyment, friendship, participation and the step-by-step development of both teams and individuals. Your contribution as a coach is vital to the continued growth of our game in the Thames Valley province and to ensure its long term future strength and wellbeing.

To assist in your development as a coach, Thames Valley Rugby Football Union (TVRFU) offers a range of NZRU recognised coaching courses and modules which are facilitated by TVRFU staff and resource coaches. These courses are designed to meet the specific developmental needs of the players and coaches at each level of the game.


Every year there are a number of compulsory coaching courses that ALL coaches need to attend to gain their accreditation for that particular year. This information is designed to assist you as a coach identify which courses you need to attend to continue to be involved in this wonderful game.


All coaching resources used on each of the courses are supplied free of charge to those attending and completing the course and who coach within the Thames Valley province.
Small Blacks (Youth) Coaching Modules
1.     Introduction to the Small Blacks Coaching Process – for Coaches, Assistant Coaches and Managers of Youth Teams (5th Grade and below) within the Thames Valley Province

This is a series of introductory modules that emphasise creating an environment of skill-development and fun. User-friendly coach’s handbooks and coaching resources are issued free to all coaches who attend the course.

There are 3 Small Blacks grade levels

·         Beginning Rugby (for Rippa)

·         Learning Rugby (for 8th and 9th Grade)

·         Playing Rugby (for 5th, 6th & 7th Grade)

It is compulsory for all coaches and assistant coaches of youth teams within the Thames Valley Province to have an NZRU Small Blacks Accreditation applicable to the grade level they will be coaching every year. It is also recommended that Team Managers attend these as well so that at least 2 of the management team are accredited to cover any absences on match day.
To gain the required Small Blacks accreditation:

NEW coaches and assistant coaches must attend a

·         Coaching Small Blacks Module (‘Survival Guide’ – Theory)

·         Small Blacks Beginning Rugby, Learning Rugby or Playing Rugby Module (Practical)

ALL Small Blacks Coaches and assistant coaches must attend a

·         Small Blacks Beginning Rugby, Learning Rugby or Playing Rugby Module (practical) applicable to the grade they are coaching every year.

The Small Blacks Beginning Rugby, Learning Rugby or Playing Rugby Module (practical) is valid for only ONE year. The accreditation certifies a coach to coach a specific Small Blacks grade level and qualifies them with Rugby Smart Principles and Small Blacks Rugby Refereeing for that level during the validation period.

If a coach moves up or down a grade level, at any given time, they will be required to attend the Small Blacks Beginning Learning and Playing Rugby Module applicable to the new level they will be coaching. Similarly – if a coach coaches more then one team and each team is in a different grade level, the coach is required to attend a separate Small Blacks Beginning Learning and Playing Rugby Module for each grade level.


2.    Small Blacks Accreditation

Coaches who have attended and completed the requirements of the Small Balcks modules will be awarded a NZRU Small Black accreditation card.

3.     Small Black Module Outcomes

The modules cover topics that will give coaches the knowledge and skills required to coach at their particular level. At the conclusion of these modules coaches will be able to understand the role of an effective coach and the code of conduct that are expected in rugby, apply the principles of play to rugby as a method of understanding the game, plan and run an effective rugby practice, and understand the basic principles of refereeing a game of rugby.




Coaches need to get serious about the effects of concussion and head injuires and how to look after player welfare