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LTPD Pathway
Functional Screening
Anatomical Adaptation
Game Demands
Conditioning for Rugby
Periodisation in Rugby

Module summary

This module emphasised the need for the coach to understand the key principles of the Long Term Player Development pathway. This module provides guidelines to the Strength and Conditioning coach and indeed the club or school in planning the preparation programme for the player. The module provides a series of stages that track the developmental needs of the player from childhood (Fundamental stage) through to a series of stages to adulthood.

In addition, the coach is recommended to observe and note the physical needs of his players. Using a simple Overhead Squat movement pattern, individual imbalances that may exist within this common movement pattern can be identified. The screen is a convenient and simple method of helping the coach to prescribe the foundation conditioning that will meet the players’ needs. We described a phase of conditioning known as ‘Anatomical Adaptation’ which is intended to prepare the player for more intense and challenging training and practice routines. This programme can be varied and can address both individual player limitations and general fitness components such as strength, power and speed and acceleration, as well as mobility and game-related drills and activities.

In our next module, we will examine the demands of the game and from this we will have a clearer overview of the physical challenges that the player encounters during match play. This then leads us to a more relevant prescription of the type and methods of conditioning that can be used to better prepare our players for the game of Rugby.