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 Post subject: Rugby
PostPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:42 am 
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Any WBGS (or other rugby-playing school) parents have a view on this?

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2014/s ... en-to-play


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:53 pm 
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DS1's experience is that it depends on how the rugby is played.

He enjoyed playing for a local rugby club for three seasons and although he had a couple of minor injuries, he felt that it was always played with good sportsmanship, which meant that he enjoyed playing.

Same with interform rugby at school; good sportsmanship, playing is fun.

He has played a few times in a team representing the school, and found the behaviour of the opposing teams (all from independent schools) very offputting; the word 'vicious' was used. It completely put him off playing for the school.


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:56 pm 
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My husband was a first aider for the local rugby team for two seasons (U13 and U14) and says that if the children are taught to tackle and trained to form the scrum properly, injuries are rare.


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:03 pm 
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I suspect that one of the problems is that teenagers in one year group can vary so hugely in size. Some 13 year olds are approaching adult height and yet others haven't started puberty. I think there is more of a risk involved when some of the players are twice the weight of others.


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Sun Dec 28, 2014 9:53 pm 
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There was a recent thread on this.

viewtopic.php?f=38&t=39249


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:25 pm 
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Thanks for these.
I understand from other parents that rugby is only popular with the minority who are good at it, and most boys don't like it and would much rather play football. I've also heard that the school doesn't allow boys to play football because it would be too popular and undermine the playing of rugby.
Do schools have an obligation to listen to the views of students and/or parents on a topic like this?
Is there any right to opt out of a sport of questionable safety like rugby?
I realise that some might say just don't send your son to that school, but what if the school is ideal in all other respects? I don't think it can seriously be suggested that one particular sport is essential to the identity or ethos of a school, can it?


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Mon Dec 29, 2014 6:29 pm 
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I know of at least one school that introduced football in response to pupil requests.


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2014 11:52 am 
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Aren't all activities only popular among children who are good at them? From academic study, to music, to sport, to drama…

I'm not sure rugby is of 'questionable safety' – there have been some horrible incidents, granted, but they are high profile precisely because they are thankfully rare. My 2 DCs both represented their schools/clubs at numerous different sports and yet their two most serious injuries came when 1) hit by a body board in Cornwall and 2) when putting a hand out to break a fall on a day much like today which resulted in a complicated spiral fracture. DS suffered more broken bones on a tennis court than he did on a rugby pitch :lol:

If you dig down into Dr Pollock's figures you will see that if your DS is not playing for a school team he has less than 10% chance of being injured playing rugby before the age of 17. I'm not saying we should ignore opportunities to make the sport even safer, but a sense of proportion is required.

All that said, Neme, I'm sure if you don't want your DS to play rugby and he has no desire to do so, then the school will at least listen to your concerns. The new head is coming from an all-girls school so possibly he will be amenable to boys being excused rugby.


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 Post subject: Re: Rugby
PostPosted: Tue Dec 30, 2014 6:03 pm 
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DS2 is in Y8 and played in the compulsory Y7 interform rugby game for 5 minutes. He had to practise rugby skills in games lessons for the first half of the Autumn Term in Y7. He hasn't played rugby since.

The boys who are good at rugby are very quickly identified and they are expected to play for the school. The remaining boys give hockey a try; the ones who are good at hockey are identified and they are put in the hockey teams. The boys who are left try various other sports.


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