Rugby America

Rugby News & Views From an American Perspective

Youth Conference Right Around the Corner

by Ted Hardy

In just a little over a week, USA Rugby’s annual Youth Conference will welcome coaches, referees, and administrators from all over the country to participate in professional development opportunities focused on growing youth and high school rugby. With a growing number of offerings for the above mentioned grassroots leaders, the conference mirrors the growth of youth and high school rugby across the country. This year’s version of the Youth Conference is being held January 27-29th in Atlanta, GA at the Georgia World Congress Center.

The three day event kicks off Friday January 27th with a Welcome Reception at Meehan’s Public House in Atlanta.

Saturday January 28th serves as the big day of the event with programs running from 8:00am all the way until 9:00pm. The conference topics are split into three categories… coaching, specialty, and administrative. Sunday January 29th serves up offerings in the morning before the closing of the conference

Highlighted topics on Saturday include:

  • Rookie Rugby, Your Best Tool for Growth with The Play Rugby USA Staff
  • Coaching the Women’s Game with USA Women’s National Team Coach Pete Steinberg
  • High School Sevens, The Newest Olympic Sport with USA Women’s Sevens National Team Coach Ric Suggit
  • Professionalizing Youth Rugby – What do I need to make the sale?
  • Center Specialist Master Class with Paul Emerick
  • Single School High School Rugby Model with Ramon Villacura of Rugby North Carolina
  • Build Your Players Up, Developing Life Skills Through Rugby with Molly Dengler, Coach of the New York Rugby Club
  • Making Refereeing Cool, Involving a New Generation with Gareth Morgan
  • Meet Your New Best Friend, your HS Athletic Association with Jenn Heinrich of Rugby Oregon
  • Scrumhalf Master Class with Mike Petri and Nigel Melville
  • USA Rugby’s American Development Model with Kurt Weaver, USA Rugby Director of Youth and HS

Highlighted topics on Sunday include:

  • Revenue Generation Through Rugby with Kurt Weaver
  • Medical Essentials – Important Information for High School Rugby – Mike Keating, USA Rugby Medical Director
  • Defensive Patterns and Reads in the HS Game with Mike Tolkin, USA National Team Backline Coach
  • Coaching Your New Sevens Player with Ric Suggit
  • Lineout – What, Where, When with Luke Gross, USA National Team Skills Coach

These topics and a whole lot more are on offer at the Youth Conference. If you have the time and opportunity to attend the event, it is highly suggested. The growth of rugby through the grassroots is the reason that a conference like this even exists. Being able to increase the knowledge base of those delivering rugby to young players is vital in our growth as a rugby nation.

USA Rugby takes a lot of heat for some of their issues, but this event is certainly not one of them. This event is a valuable learning and networking tool directed at the people that are making the biggest difference for rugby in America.


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This entry was posted on January 17, 2012 by in High School/U19 Rugby, Olympics, Rugby News, Youth Rugby.

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