'Borrowed with Pride' from Ruck.co.uk (full link at bottom of this article). Its been tweaked slightly to fit our club but still a great list of reasons why what we do is very much worth it:
Getting kids off the sofa and onto the rugby pitch brings a wide variety of physical, mental and social skills which will bode well for them as they reach adulthood and beyond. Obviously, we would say that. But in order to prove our point, we’ve compiled no less than 15 reasons why kids need to grow up playing rugby union.
1. Improve physical health
Forgive us for starting with the obvious, but rugby brings physical health benefits to anyone who takes to the field – and children are no different.
2. Develop social skills
Developing social skills is another huge part of growing up, and one that again needs to be developed at a young age if the benefits are to be reaped in the future.
3. They need to lose
Because it is character building, because it’s good practice for life, because they will get over it and they need to realise that.
4. They need to win
Because it’s bonding, because it feels good, because they need to know that there are rewards for effort.
5. Equal Opportunities
Unlike just about any other team sport, rugby is about all players having the same opportunity to run with the ball, pass, tackle and enjoy the game.
6. Build self-esteem and confidence
Regularly engaging in sports can help subtly boost your child’s self-esteem. This happens as the child sets small goals on the field, such as perfecting a skill, and achieves them.
7. Learn valuable life-lessons
All sports have lessons that can be taken from the field and applied to real life. But rugby has lessons that can’t be found in any other game – we’re not talking about the standard generics of “teamwork” and “playing hard.” We’re talking about the preparation for life that can only be found on the rugby pitch.
8. Positive Role Models
It’s quite likely your kids will discover positive role models in coaches and more senior players
9. Make lifelong friends
10. Breed academic success
It’s hard to believe that what your child does on the field can impact what they do in the classroom, but it does. Children who were involved with at least one sport were more likely to get better grades suggests a study conducted by the American College of Sports Medicine.
11. Safety. No, really—safety!
Rugby players don’t always wear pads and it’s a collision sport. Safety is a huge part of the sport and culture of rugby.
12. They’ll experience the incredible feeling of being part of a team
13. They will respect others, regardless of their decisions
Before respect for authority completely vanishes in the world, the last place it will be found is on the rugby field. When the referee makes a decision we disagree with, kids still call him “sir” and don’t talk back.
14. It helps to reduce stress
Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress.
15. It could even go somewhere…(Saints/Sinners, County, Regional, England!)