Another successful summer of Dragons skills camps has now concluded, with over 50 children taking the opportunity to enhance and develop their rugby skills. The camps, run at Rodney Parade and Ystrad Mynach, were the perfect backdrop to allow the development of young rugby players who, like previous participants Hallam Amos and Harri Keddie, aspire to be top professional rugby players.
The courses were delivered by Dragons Community Department employees Mike Sage and Janice Chappell and provided an excellent combination of skills, drills and coaching for individuals who wanted to enhance their rugby knowledge and develop as players.
Many of the children had attended camps in previous years and it was great to see how they had progressed since they last attended, as well as show them new skills and techniques to further their development. It was also great to see lots of eager new faces, some who had never tried rugby before. This created a good blend of abilities who came together to learn from top quality coaches as well as meet and learn from some of the Dragons top stars.
The camps at Rodney Parade, home of the Dragons, lasted three days, allowing ample time for the children to develop all aspects of their rugby performance. Day 1 focussed on running, fitness and an introduction to ball work, and participants ended the day with a game of touch rugby. The second day built on the skills learned on day one and introduced evasion skills, while day 3 saw an introduction to contact and the tackle which culminated in a 30 minute full contact game. Following the game, stars from the Dragons arrived to hand out goody bags, sign autographs and pose for photos with the children.
This year, participants also took part in a quiz each lunchtime. The quiz was a welcome change of pace for the participants after a tremendous effort throughout the morning. It consisted of 50 general knowledge questions ranging from rugby and the Dragons, to children’s television programmes like Scooby Doo.
Some participants also attended a stadium tour of Rodney Parade to learn more about the history of ground and of the region. The tour included taking a peek into the Dragons' changing rooms, gym and concluded with a walk through the new Bisley stand.
Each participant also received free season membership of the Dragons, encouraging them to come with their families to Rodney Parade and get behind the men of Gwent.
Skills camps will be running again this half term at Rodney Parade and Ystrad Mynach for children between the ages of 8 and 14. If you would like your child to learn from top quality coaches, develop their skills in a new and inspiring environment and have the opportunity to meet their Dragons' heroes, email Mike Sage at email@example.com
Ryan Robinson – Dragons Community Ambassado