During the last week of August, 50 juniors (aged 11-15) attended the 4th junior summer camp at WRFC. As in previous years the camp included much more than just rugby sessions. Netball, ultimate Frisbee, football, American football, and various conditioning activities were all incorporated to add variety, but were also used to advance skills useful to rugby development.
Activities were run by Winchester 1st XV coaches and players, Tim Lander, Greg Sullivan and Zach Kinnaird; and Tom Forster, 1st XV player and London Irish strength & conditioning coach spent the week running speed, agility and strength training sessions, aimed at developing the players’ technique and knowledge of appropriate training regimes. Christine Giles returned to take the players through yoga routines helping them to see the benefits in terms of core strength and flexibility. We also had a fascinating talk from Pat McCarry focused on leadership. Pat has coached football professionally in the U.S. and worked with elite teams in many different sports, and now works as a leadership coach for business executives. In particular, he has studied the All Blacks leadership model, interviewing key players and coaches, including Steve Hansen, Wayne Smith & Richie McCaw. Pat spoke primarily about the devolved leadership model developed by the All Blacks, emphasising the role that all members of a team can play in leadership.
Girls were again invited to attend the camp, but sadly only 2 girls took up the opportunity, but both thoroughly enjoyed their time training alongside the boys. In future years we would like to increase the number of girls attending, in line with the club objective of growing the female section of the club. We also welcomed a number of non-members, most of whom are looking at joining the club for the forthcoming season.
As well as providing a challenging and enjoyable week for the players, the Camp has raised over £4,000 for Winchester RFC. The charge for the week was £115 per player, which we believe is a very reasonable fee for any 4-day activity, never mind one including the quality and variety of coaching provided. Thanks to Club President Brian Challis, Tesco sponsored us this year, funding the cost of the camp T-shirts.
I would like to record my appreciation to the coaches that gave their time and the players whose enthusiasm and positive attitude made the week such as success. Also, our thanks go to Tracy Scoines and her team for their clubhouse hospitality.
Updated 13:12 - 4 Sep 2017 by Tim Fell