Developing fitness with FMS
FMS and the athletic motor skills mentioned previously are the building blocks that sport-specific skills and athletic competencies are built upon. It is very important that coaches develop these movement skills in order for rugby players to have a solid foundation to build athleticism upon. The components of fitness and athleticism can still, however, be developed concurrently with FMS in children. Prior to the onset of puberty, children can improve in all fitness components. Some key components of fitness for rugby include:
- Strength and Power
- Speed, Agility, and Endurance
- Flexibility and Mobility
Improvements in these components of fitness occur due to normal maturation resulting in physical growth, and involvement in physical activity be it general activity or programmes of physical activity and sport. Under the physical activity heading we include all physical exercises and activity including everyday activity (walking, cycling), informal play (including playground activities and home physical activities) and formal play activities (including rugby and physical education). Involvement in these activities results in greater levels of fitness and movement competence. Fitness can be advanced using the fundamental movement skills organised in mini-games, body-weight exercises and movement circuits. These types of training can improve the above components of fitness while using FMS and athletic motor skill-based exercises and drills. Volume, intensity, type, and frequency of training will depend on the time you have with the young players and their capabilities.