Sport of the Month London Touch Rugby
Sevens, Rugby league and Rugby union. Those are probably the rugby clubs that you think of when you think of rugby. However, there is another type of rugby that is worth finding out more about: touch rugby. Now, when you think of rugby you probably think of the tackles and the hits, because that is a big part of the sport. However, touch rugby is just as physical as traditional rugby… except you won’t go home with quite so many bruises.
What is touch rugby?
Touch rugby is a type of rugby that is played with six people on a side and players touch each other to stop play. Touch is similar to Sevens in terms of quickness of play and is a mixture of sevens, rugby union and rugby league in terms of style. When a player gets touched in touch rugby, they have to put the ball down wherever they get touched.
A big difference between touch rugby and other types is that touch rugby can be mixed so that both men and women play on the same team. Teams can be all men, all women or a mixture of both. The mixture of men and women allows for more games to be played against more people.
There are only six people per side in touch, which means everyone gets involved and there is non-stop action. Everyone on the team is involved all the time. So if you are looking for a physical team sport that allows you to be active and involved the whole time, here it is.
Why should I participate in Touch?
Fitness is a big part of any form of rugby and touch is no exception. Improved fitness is a benefit to touch because, as mentioned, you are always active and always involved in play. There is a constant rhythm to the games. You will also develop a lot of skills while playing, like catching and running.
Teamwork is a huge part of touch rugby. Teamwork and communication are two of the biggest parts of touch. Often times, a score is from work done by the other five people on the team. Communication is key to touch rugby.
Touch is a very good challenge. Anyone can take it as far as they want. If you want to just play occasionally in Richmond Park or if you want to play in tournaments, it is up to every individual. There are many different levels from beginner to intermediate to advanced.
It is also a social and fun sport. It is too serious so the fun aspect is not forgotten. It is also one of the fastest growing sports in England with around 12,000 people playing around the UK, so finding a club near you is easy, especially through TotallySporty.
Training will include fitness drills, patterns of play, ball handling, speed and endurance drills, dynamic stretching and playing an actual game. Touch will help improve speed, endurance and help build and tone core and hamstring muscles.
How do I get started?
Anyone can start playing touch rugby. Plus, it is almost beneficial not to have played rugby league or rugby union because of the differences involved.
Improvement in touch rugby can be gained by playing more and playing in tournaments, especially tournaments with referees. Playing in tournaments and joining a club with a qualified coach are good ways to keep improving your skills. It is also a good suggestion to take a level 1 referee course to get to know the rules of the game a little bit better.