- 100 female-focused rugby sessions taking place across England to celebrate Women’s Sport Week. You can find sessions in your area here.
- Rugby Women content to take over England Rugby channels, championing women’s contribution to the game
To celebrate Women’s Sport Week, over 100 female-focused rugby sessions are taking place across the country in a bid to encourage women and girls to pick up the oval shaped ball.
With events including Pitch Up and Play sessions at Telford RFC, West Norfolk and Eccles Ladies and Littleborough’s Ladies Night, there are plenty of opportunities for women to be introduced to the game. With so many variations of the game to try, the week will give new players the chance to try out O2 Touch, Pitch Up and Play sessions and 15-a-side games.
Participation and exposure of women’s rugby is growing year on year and has been recently boosted by the Team GB women’s participation in the Olympics, which featured its first ever England female referee, Sarah Cox, and the recent introduction of full-time contracts for the 15-a-side game.
The growth of women’s rugby is evident at both a school and club level, with 61,250 girls participating in CBRE All Schools during the 2015/16 academic year and 4,000 regular female O2 Touch players.
Steve Grainger, RFU Rugby Development Director, said: “The RFU has invested in a range of playing opportunities for women and girls across the grassroots game and, as part of the legacy of the 2014 Women’s Rugby World Cup, we have seen a fantastic growth in participation numbers as a result. There are currently over 300 rugby clubs with women’s teams across England and we hope to see this number continue to grow.”
2015/16 was a record-breaking season for Bath RFC Ladies who attained 53 new members, enabling them to field their first ever Ladies Second XV, while Camp Hill recently attracted 120 girls to their first ever Pitch Up and Play session involving nine clubs from the North Midlands and Staffordshire, and run by the club’s coaches, administrators and coaches from visiting teams.
Women are central to the game, contributing across all aspects of rugby, from refereeing and coaching to volunteering and governance. To celebrate and reward their involvement England Rugby is hosting a Rugby Women takeover of their channels as part of Women’s Sport Week, profiling women’s teams and individuals who are shaping and growing rugby.
To find a women’s rugby team or session in your area here.
Report courtesy of England Rugby