The Brit-Lions Rugby Club is hosting its semi-annual TRY Rugby Day on Sunday to introduce the sport to a potential new generation of players.
Al Pruden, the director for the club’s youth program, says the majority of young players take to the pitch because they’ve spent numerous Saturdays on the sidelines as their mom or dad played for the John Oliver Park-based organization but we also are seeing a growing interest from families outside of the traditional rugby community.
TRY Rugby Day is a chance to reach a broader audience whose curiosity about the sport may have been piqued by the party atmosphere of the annual HSBC Rugby Sevens tournament at B.C. Place or the international success of Canada’s men's and women’s teams.
The event is set for noon to 2 p.m. at John Oliver.
“We want the sport to be as popular in the community as soccer, hockey or football. So we have made programs as family-friendly as possible,” explained Pruden who has been with the club for over 30 years and his son Connor has played the past six seasons.
The TRY Rugby event will expose kids to various elements of the game through stations that have been developed by the B.C. Rugby Union. They’ll learn a little about rugby skills like agility, running and passing.
“They get to try a bit of this and a bit of that and have fun,” continued Pruden. “That’s how we grew up with the game.”
Brit-Lions President, Loren Dillane reinforces mini rugby’s goals;
“Mini rugby provides youth an excellent opportunity to gradually learn the rules and laws of the sport,” he said. “Our youngest athletes start off learning the basics through flag-rugby and as they get older we progressively incorporate tackling in a safe and controlled environment. “Minis help teach our young athletes teamwork, communication, hard-work as well as how to manage winning and more importantly losing. We focus on the FUNdamentals and getting our players constantly carrying the ball. Y
“You don't just pick a team, you join a family, and at the Brit Lions Rugby Club we hope to get as many athletes exposed to this amazing lifelong sport as possible!”
For more information visit britlions.com