'It's important for us to normalise women and girls in rugby and to show a clear and exciting pathway within the game'
Female rugby players across England are relishing the much-anticipated return of outdoor sport with camps and workshops selling out in record time.
Former England international Rachael Burford’s Girls Rugby Club has completely sold out of places at four of its Easter camps including two full-day camps at Wimbledon RFC in London. Many more being run throughout April at various UK locations have just limited places remaining, with more than 260 under-18 female rugby players so far registered to attend.
Current and former England, Wales and Scotland rugby internationals including Rocky Clark, Shaunagh Brown, Emily Scarratt, Georgie Gulliver, Elinor Snowsill, Jasmine Joyce and Claire Cruikshank, will make up the star-studded coaching line-up boasting 448 international caps between them.
The one day camps are an opportunity for under-18 female rugby players to learn from legends of the women’s game, to hone their skills and to grow their rugby knowledge with both on and off-pitch sessions. The camps form part of the Girls Rugby Club’s mission to plug any gaps in the development pathway and to retain, develop and inspire young female rugby players.
During the latest national lockdown the Girls Rugby Club ran 13 live Zoom sessions as part of its Lockdown Squad to keep young female rugby players active. The free online workouts were attended by over 300 girls and featured international rugby players Emily Scarratt, Leanne Riley, Celia Quansah, Lauren Delany, Elinor Snowsill, Shaunagh Brown and Rachael Burford leading a range of sessions on things like fitness, skills, nutrition, recovery, confidence and mindset. This year’s April camps signal the return of the Girls Rugby Club’s popular face-to-face sessions and are the first in a full schedule of camps and development programmes to be delivered by the club this year.
Girls Rugby Club founder Rachael Burford, former England international and current Harlequins captain says, “The opportunity to meet and learn from female rugby role models is hugely important for young girls coming through at grassroots level. It’s something us older players never had exposure to in our early years of playing and so instead we looked up to the men’s players. It’s important for us to normalise women and girls in rugby and to show a clear and exciting pathway within the game.
“Working with young female rugby players and seeing their potential, their passion for the game and their ambition is what makes what we do worthwhile. Camps like these are even more important now that girls are returning to rugby after a year away from the game. We want to prepare them and give them a launching pad to go back to the sport they love with a fire and determination to take their game further.”
Places are still available for April camps at Winchester, Doncaster, Oxford and Taunton, as well as June camps at Tunbridge Wells, Crowthorne, Nottingham and Braintree. For more information and to sign up, go to girlsrugbyclub.com.
"This Six Nations tournament feels like a real turning point"
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) April 1, 2021
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