Howick College rugby promotes new safety law trials

Howick College rugby players practice new tackling law under the watchful eye of Margarette Nena from NZ Rugby.

In the interest of ensuring greater player safety, New Zealand Rugby will be trialling three new law variations to school grade rugby in four provincial unions this season.

Six male and six female rugby players from Howick College will feature in a series of promotional and educational videos demonstrating how the new laws will look.

Deputy principal and 1st XV rugby head coach Mark Thomas was delighted to be approached by NZR game development manager Evan Crawford to assist with promoting these changes.

“The rugby programme at Howick College continues to grow in profile so we are honoured to be given the opportunity to contribute to making the game safer for younger players.

Player retention is one of the biggest challenges facing rugby at the moment and these trial variations may help to create a safer progression in the high contact areas of the game”, says Thomas.

The new variations, which include all tackles being made from the stomach down, the use of a split-stance when trying to compete for the ball after a tackle and players remaining grounded when receiving a high kick, are being trialled regionally in the hope that they will significantly reduce the risk of head and neck injuries.

The training and promotion video was filmed on site at Howick College on Thursday April 8 and will be available to view on the NZ Rugby website and their social media pages.