Why do rugby managers sit in the stands?

One of the big differences between professional football and rugby is that rugby managers usually sit in the stands. It is odd considering lots of other sports see their managers shouting instructions from the sidelines. So why don’t rugby managers do this? 

Why do rugby managers sit in the stands? Rugby managers sit in the stands because It gives them the best view of the pitch, making it easier for them to make changes. It also stops the coaches from getting involved with the referee due to decisions. 

There are a few different reasons why rugby managers sit in the stands or in a room at the top of the stands. There is not a rule and there does not seem to be any historical reason for rugby managers sitting in the stands. In fact, there are some managers who still decide to sit or stand at pitch level during the game. But there are also reasons for managers sitting in the stand. 

The main reason is that it gives these managers a better view of the pitch and their tactics in play. You can see the entire pitch from the stands and so it gives a better overview of the game. Whereas, if you are sitting at pitch level during a rugby game, it is easy to miss a lot of things.

England manager Clive Woodward famously showed the squad birds-eye view video of their games ahead of their 2003 World cup success to show them how the patterns of play could be exploited.

Seeing more of the pitch means it is easier to make tactical changes during the game. In terms of tactics, rugby coaches will rarely communicate with their players in the middle of the game. This means they don’t need to be at pitch level because they don’t need to be barking orders at their players as football managers do. 

The other reason why rugby coaches sit in the stands is the technology available. Sitting in the stands means there are usually multiple computers in front of the coaches during a game, giving them access to replays and statistics. This gives them a better look at the game going on. 

Rugby coaches did not always sit in the stands, as they would not have been able to communicate easily with their players. But the invention of headsets and wireless communication allows coaches to talk to other coaches on the sidelines, instead of screaming at the players from the sidelines.

Who are the coaches talking to on their headsets in Rugby? 

One of the things that you will see a lot in professional rugby coaching is the head coaches talking to people on headsets. 

Rugby coaches are usually talking to other coaches on their staff on their headsets. During a rugby game, the camera will sometimes pan up to the stands where you can see the senior coaches in the room at the top of the stands. Usually in this room is the head coach as well as the most senior and important assistant coaches. 

All or some of these people will be wearing headsets and they look as though they are talking to someone else. Well, usually these coaches will be talking to other coaches who are down on the sidelines. Quite often, rugby teams will put some of the less senior coaches on the sideline during a game, instead of up in the stands. 

This is so that these coaches can relay messages to the players that come from the coaches in the stands. It allows the senior coaches to get a better viewpoint on the game, while still allowing them to make tactical changes when necessary. On the headset, coaches can be talking about substitutions or changes to their team’s tactics. 

Why do rugby coaches cover their mouths? 

One of the stranger things you might see on a rugby field is that when a coach is talking to one of their players, they may cover their mouth. However, there is good reasoning behind this. 

Rugby coaches cover their mouths while talking to stop other people from seeing or hearing what they are saying. By covering their mouths, other people can’t try to lip-read what the coaches are saying. This is usually done when a coach is relaying sensitive information, usually about tactics.

If the opposition team were able to figure out what the coach is saying, then they will know what the tactics of that team will be. Therefore by covering your mouth as a coach, you prevent the other team from getting a chance of figuring out your team’s tactics before they are put in place. 

This is not something that you see happen in rugby as much as in other sports for a few different reasons. One of those is that the coaches do not have very much communication with the players during the game because of the constant intensity of rugby. Rugby games also tend to have fewer cameras on the coaches at any time. 

What is a director of Rugby? 

The term director of Rugby has been in the sport for a long time and yet a lot of people still do not know what this role means. It is much more than being a rugby coach. 

A Director of Rugby is responsible for the recruitment and management of all players and coaches in a rugby team. They are also in charge of developing that team and trying to lead the team to success. While some rugby coaches have gone on to become Directors of Rugby for their clubs, the role is about much more than just coaching. 

One of the crucial things that a Director of Rugby has to do is decide which players and coaches they want on their team. The Director of Rugby has to be able to get the very best coaches and players onto their team while keeping within the budget. It is an incredibly difficult job to do.

There also needs to be the management of the current players, including working on contracts and any loan agreements for young players. It tends to focus on the off-the-field issues more than on the field. Guys like Pat Lam, Mark McCall and Rob Baxter are all examples of people who hold the Director of Rugby position at their respective clubs. 

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