Planning it all

After you have set your goals and thought over where you are now with the team and players, you can start to plan your season. Piecing the puzzle together is fun to do, involve as many people as possible in this. You need to think about how much time you have with the team. Will all sessions be on the pitch? Will there be indoor sessions?

Now you know how much time you have, you need to estimate the hours needed to implement all your goals. Ask yourself if this matches on the availlable time. Perhaps you have to re-visit your goals and be less ambitious?

The year plan

Call it a macro plan cycle, now you know what you want to achieve, it is time to get organised. Follow these steps:

  1. Mark down all the training sessions you will run this season. Now you know how many hours you have with the team.
  2. Put in all matches.
  3. Split up the season in blocks, like pre-season fitness, defense, open-play, restarts, prep for plays-off, play-off.
  4. Detail these blocks, built a framework by defining a standard session like, warm-up, games, technical, cool-down. What works for you.
  5. Next you can detail the frames for each session, look for suitable drills.


I always like to plan in cycles of about 6 weeks. This is a period you can well look over, not too much should happen in this period. Focus on one or two main goals. Examples are pre-season conditioning, midfield defense, line-out, kick restart, etc.

You could argue for a transition week between cycles and youth coaches use schoolholidays for this.


I always break-up my sessions in exercises of 10 minutes. I have found this accommodates getting acquainted with the organisation of the drill itself and time to feedback my observations to the players. Also, if you need to take longer on a specific subject or skill I rather take a different exercise to keep things fresh than do the same exercise for twenty minutes.

Think about the Trainingelements that together built your trainingssession. Examples are: “Catching & Passing”, “Tackle”, “Scrum”.

Also, in a twice a week training plan, I like to use the first session on individual aspects and the second sessions on team and unit aspects of the goals we work on. Perhaps think about this as technical v tactical goals.

Running the program

Now the program is set, you can detail the sessions. You have to find appropiate exercises within the different Trainingelements you have found to variate for the 4-6 week cycle you have defined.

Think carefully about what you want to achieve. Is a technical session more appropiate? is game based learning better? Choose the optimum situation.

SuperCoach Online software to help you

This software tool automates most of the steps I described above! Advantages are:

  • You are guided through the process of developing your yearplan;
  • Material is targeted at the age & development phase of your team;
  • Once you decided on the goals and trainingelements, the software details the individual training sessions automatically, thanks to the unique rugby development model I have set-up;
  • You are missing a suitable and favorite exercise? Add it to the database!
  • Provides better insights and structures;

SuperCoach Online: a big time saver!