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Tackle Your Feelings: Experience of Help-Seeking for Mental Well-Being Concerns in Professional Rugby Union Players

Deirdre Lyons, Philip Clarke, and Robert C. Dempsey

-related difficulties among professional rugby union players, particularly in Ireland, the focus of the present study. There may be several reasons why help-seeking among elite athletes is low. Common barriers to mental health-related help-seeking identified among elite athletes across sports include perceptions of

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“Playing With Apartheid”: Irish and South African Rugby, 1964–1989 1

Chris Bolsmann

, For more than a quarter of a century your country has had one of the most energetic and effective anti-apartheid movements … for our struggle in the fields of economic, cultural, and sports relations. We, therefore, salute your sportspeople, especially the rugby players. 2 Mandela made similar

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“If Britain Wants War on Africa, She Will Have It”: African Reprisals to the 1974 British Lions Rugby Tour of South Africa

Michelle M. Sikes

past and an end to minority rule in southern Africa. Sport became a field in which their call for equality achieved international prominence. Ganga proclaimed that all of independent Africa, then numbering more than forty nations, would boycott all forms of British sport if the Lions—a rugby union team

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Rugby Talent Development

Simon A. Worsnop

The purpose of this article is to examine the application of talent development principles to the coaching of rugby. It will consider the generic and sport specific problems of talent identification and selection, particularly the danger of early selection that poses the dual problems of early disengagement on the one hand and over specialization on the other. The paper will touch upon the various proposed models of athlete development and discuss the ways in which a national governing body of sport can influence player development along the age continuum. The role of the individual coach in developing young players and the importance of coach development and education will also be considered. Understanding the needs of players at different times in their development, and having a clear knowledge of how to improve performance in an efficient, time restrained but also enjoyable manner is a key skill for any coach. However, this skill requires time to grow and many coach education systems do not provide the ongoing support mechanisms that will enable a coach to grow and flourish, resulting in a less than optimal coaching environment.

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The Acculturation Experiences of Elite Rugby Union Coaches

Andrew J.A. Hall, Cedric English, Leigh W. Jones, Tony Westbury, and Russell Martindale

? Third, in examining the paucity in understanding of the acculturation environment ( Ryba et al., 2018 ; Schinke et al., 2013 ), how does the host environment support players coming into a team? Method Participants The sample consisted of five male elite rugby union coaches—four of whom, at the time of

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Macronutrient Intakes of Male Rugby Union Players: A Review

Katherine Elizabeth Black, Alistair David Black, and Dane Frances Baker

Worldwide 120 countries are affiliated to the rugby union, and rugby is thought to be played by ∼7 million people ( Rugby World, 2017 ). The two major club competitions are “Super Rugby” played in the Southern Hemisphere, with teams from Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, Japan, and Argentina

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“How Am I Going, Coach?”—The Effect of Augmented Feedback During Small-Sided Games on Locomotor, Physiological, and Perceptual Responses

Jonathon J.S. Weakley, Dale B. Read, Hugh H.K. Fullagar, Carlos Ramirez-Lopez, Ben Jones, Cloe Cummins, and John A. Sampson

Small-sided games (SSGs) are commonly used as a tool for training team-sport athletes. 1 Amateur and professional athletes 2 across a wide range of football codes (eg, soccer, 3 rugby union, 4 and rugby league 5 ) use SSGs, as they can develop multiple facets (eg, physical, technical, and

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Home Versus Away Competition: Effect on Psychophysiological Variables in Elite Rugby Union

Brian Cunniffe, Kevin A. Morgan, Julien S. Baker, Marco Cardinale, and Bruce Davies

This study evaluated the effect of game venue and starting status on precompetitive psychophysiological measures in elite rugby union. Saliva samples were taken from players (starting XV, n = 15, and nonstarters, n = 9) on a control day and 90 min before 4 games played consecutively at home and away venues against local rivals and league leaders. Precompetition psychological states were assessed using the Competitive State Anxiety Inventory−2. The squad recorded 2 wins (home) and 2 losses (away) over the study period. Calculated effect sizes (ESs) showed higher pregame cortisol- (C) and testosterone- (T) difference values before all games than on a baseline control day (ES 0.7−1.5). Similar findings were observed for cognitive and somatic anxiety. Small between-venues C differences were observed in starting XV players (ES 0.2−0.25). Conversely, lower home T- (ES 0.95) and higher away C- (ES 0.6) difference values were observed in nonstarters. Lower T-difference values were apparent in nonstarters (vs starting XV) before home games, providing evidence of a between-groups effect (ES 0.92). Findings show an anticipatory rise in psychophysiological variables before competition. Knowledge of starting status appears a moderating factor in the magnitude of player endocrine response between home and away games.

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An Ecological Insight Into the Design and Integration of Attacking Principles of Play in Professional Rugby Union: A Case Example

Jim McKay, Keith Davids, Sam Robertson, and Carl T. Woods

unique insight into how a professional Rugby union organization grounded their preparation for competitive performance within an ecological dynamics framework. More specifically, this paper details how the Queensland Reds designed and integrated a set of game principles that afforded players with

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Mental Fatigue Impairs Tackling Technique in Amateur Rugby Union Players

Demi Davidow, Mitchell Smith, Tayla Ross, Gwyneth Laura James, Lara Paul, Michael Lambert, Ben Jones, and Sharief Hendricks

The tackle is a physically and psychologically challenging contest of skill between 2 or more opposing players in collision-based sports such as rugby union, rugby league, rugby sevens, and American football. 1 – 3 The tackle contest typically starts when a defending player(s), known as the tackler