The Game is Changing

USA Rugby has sets its sights on rugby becoming a mass appeal sport in the US, and our national teams being a competitive force in international competition. In order to achieve these goals our coaches will need to play an increasingly important role in promoting and increasing participation and improving the performance and success of our teams at all levels. World-wide the role of the coach in all sports is evolving from its traditional vocational status to a professional one.

Coaching is in its most dynamic era in history. Coaches work with increasingly diverse populations and face heightening demands from their athletes, their athletes’ parents, administrators and fans. Coaches are required to fulfill a variety of roles that may include educator, guide, sport psychologist and business manager. The professional area has placed a new emphasis on positive interaction and overall development of athletes rather than simply the win–loss record. There is greater accessibility to information and visibility to a larger community in the digital age. All of these factors make coaching both more exciting and taxing than ever before.

In this context, coaches have a responsibility to improve and expand their own capabilities on an ongoing basis to fully meet the needs of the athletes they serve. The organizations that employ them owe it to coaches to ensure they have sufficient educational footing, philosophical orientation and resources to fulfill the duties expected of them.

- The International Sport Coaching Framework, Version 1.1

For these reasons the USA Rugby Coach Development Program has been up-graded to provide the requirements, training, resources, and support required for our coach members to fulfill their responsibilities and achieve their goals. The program has been designed to convey information, aid understanding, evaluate competency, reward experience, and encourage innovation. The standards included in the program are seen as “minimum” but essential to providing the foundation for the growth of the sport and the development of rugby coaches in the US.