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HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy World Rugby Level 2 Coaching Course
Kuala Lumpur, 13 - 16 September 2016

Article by David Cockburn

The HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy, in conjunction with World Rugby and our partner COBRA Rugby Club in Kuala Lumpur, delivered a World Rugby Level Two coaching course at the COBRA Rugby Club, in Kuala Lumpur, from Tuesday 13th September – Friday 16th September 2016.

The course was set up by Craig Brown, CEO of the HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy along with TJ Tan, Vice President of the COBRA Rugby Club.

The course was facilitated by Mohammad Faiz Samsukhidir of the COBRA Rugby Club and delivered and assessed by HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy coaches Dave Cockburn and Simon Burns and Malaysia Rugby Union Coach Educator Nik Safuan Ismade

Seventeen participants undertook the course from a range of home bases through Malaysia including Sarawak, Selangor, Sabah, Pahang, Terengganu, Kelantan, Kuala Lumpur, Johor, Malaka, Negeri Sembilan and Pulau Pinang.

After nearly 20 hours of flying, I met up with Simon (Si) for the first time in Kuala Lumpur International Airport and an obvious bond was initiated, as we are both props. We got picked up by Faiz and taken to our hotel and then subsequently Faiz took us to COBRA Rugby Club where we started to set up the classroom for the start of the course on Tuesday 13th September.

The HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy had provided a polo and T-shirt for all on the course so these we organised as well. The rest of Sunday was spent discussing the plan of action for the delivery of the course. It was decided that Si and Dave would do all the delivery in the classroom and that Nik would help with assessing session delivery by the participants. Nik would also help in looking at the six-week diaries and have input into writing up the course transcripts to determine if competency had been achieved.

National Holiday – R&R time for the Penguin coaches.

The course started at 8AM with the introductions, review of the course and issuing of relevant course material and clothing. In particular the Coach Educators reviewed the pre-course work the coaches had to carry out. This included:

  • Proof of having completed WR Rugby Ready and Laws of the Game;
  • Assess strengths, weaknesses and goals (Recorded on Post-it notes to reflect on later),
  • Review of the coaching session.

This broke the ice and we were ready to look at Module 1. Module 1 covers coaching styles and coaching process. In particular:

  • Identify needs and explain assessment protocols especially the need for proof of the six week diary
  • Delivery of pre prepared coaching session
  • Educators demonstration of range of styles
  • Coaching process – "How to Coach"
  • Self- reflection and benchmarking

We were then ready to go out and get coaching. We split the group into two and all the coaches got 10 – 15 minutes to deliver their pre-prepared session. Essentially this was to see how they coached and to benchmark their delivery. The Coach Educators went through a REVIEW process with each coach and made sure that the key thing was to self-reflect on the session they delivered.

The sessions delivered by the local coaches were of a good standard and this was emphasised in the classroom, when we went back to deliver the rest of module one.

We finished day one about 4pm having given the local coaches homework to read about the Long Term Player Development and to make sure that if they had not done a diary that they get started on it.

Nik, Si and Dave then met and discussed the day and how it went. The general feeling was positive and that we had a good group of coaches to work with.

We started at 8am by summarizing day one. We then started delivering Module 2. Module covers the following:

  • Rugby’s core values
  • Role of the coach
  • Developing a personal philosophy, including LTPD discussion
  • Applying the principles of attack and defence – video
  • Team strengths and weaknesses
  • Planning guidelines

We then went out to the field again and allowed the coaches to deliver the same session they had delivered on the previous day. Having benchmarked their performance, there was obvious progression from day one and they were buying into ideas being given in module 2.

We set the local coaches home work to plan their main coaching session based on the philosophy they have created by taking on board the principles of attack and defence.

The Coach Educators felt all coaches had made good progress in day 2 and the feedback was again very positive.

We started again at 8am by summarising day 2. We then went out and got started on the big session delivery. This took longer, as the coaches got longer to deliver their sessions and the review was more intense. A lot of the work done in this session and would need to be transferred into their transcripts.

This delivery was part of Module 3 and the key concepts in module 3 are:

  • Planning and delivery
  • Plan a practice in groups
  • Deliver a session
  • Review

In the afternoon we split into three groups and allowed the local coaches to develop the group practice. They then delivered the practice as a group with input from all participants. The level of work put into the sessions was extremely high from all groups, with excellent presentation skills from all.

We finished day three about 4pm having set the homework to make sure the course participants had completed their diaries and to Identify the key factors for a specific skill, which would be reviewed tomorrow.

The Coach Educators review was again very positive and we were all encouraged by how much progress had taken place over three days.

This was the last day of the course and was very intense. We delivered Module 4 and Module 5 as well as going through the participant’s transcripts, diaries and had our one to one sessions with each coach.

Module 4 comprises:

  • Key factor analysis introduction and video work across two ranges of skill:
    • Pass, run, throw, jump, evasion,
    • Individual scrum shape, tackle, ball into contact, lineout lift etc.
  • Player welfare,
  • Planning and Practice,
  • Educator demonstration.

The participants where given an individual Key Factor and asked to developed a practice for this factor and presented it to the group. This was done in the classroom, as there was heavy rain outside. Once again the level of organization and presentation skills was extremely high.

The Coach Educators then delivered the final part of Module 4 looking at safe scrummage and how to build the scrum up. Simon demonstrated a very effective way for building up the scrum in 10 minutes. Dave introduced some warm-up skills prior to the scrum. Player welfare, planning and practice were incorporated in this session.

Module 5 was delivered next and comprises the following:

  • Functional role analysis introduction
  • Ruck and Maul
  • Selection
  • Contemporary Law issues
  • Further information
  • Diary and assessment using transcripts

Module 5 was delivered in the afternoon. Once this was completed the Coach Educators met and reviewed the individual assessments and the overall conclusion was that all participants had reached a competent level to become World Rugby Level 2 coaches.

Si and myself have to thank TJ, Faiz and Nik for all the help that was put into making this course the success it was. Also we have to thank COBRA Rugby Club for providing the course facilities. Also thanks to HSBC who sponsor the HSBC Penguin Coaching Academy and who paid for the most of the course..

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