Last Saturday, June 11th, the first Game Development Conference took place at Samworth Church Academy in Mansfield. This has replaced what used to be known as the Coaching Conference with the aim of being more inclusive and drawing in Match Officials , Volunteers, Coaches and Medical support as integral parts of the “Rugby Family”.
NLD Head of Game Development, Dave Andrews said, “I was really pleased that we had over 70 people attend, particularly as the weather forecast was unpromising and Australia v England was on the TV.”
Among the guest speakers were Darren Gourley the RFU Area Training Manager, John Widdowson the RFU Midlands Match Official Development Officer, Paul Carrol the NLD Referee Society Chairman, and Marcus Caton a highly respected and successful locally based Referee who entertained and informed us with tales from his journey from a small town in Australia to refereeing at Twickenham.
Simon Worsnop, the RFU National Fitness Manager, skilfully aided by local CRC Calvin Beech, then entertainingly delivered the new CPD “ Managing Contact” which he himself had written for the RFU. It emphasised the importance of “specificity” in designing games to develop “Fitness” and demonstrated games, drills and exercises which could be delivered with this in mind.
Feedback on the day has been positive and appreciative and planning has already begun for next year’s conference.
Special thanks must go to those players from the NLD U17/18 squad who turned up and took part in the delivery of some of the more strenuous activities, thus enabling some of the attendees to wake up on Sunday morning and be able to get out of bed without additional help!