The impact of rule modifications on player behaviour in a talent identification and development environment: A case study of the Rugby Football Union’s Wellington Academy Rugby Festival

Mike Ashford, Kate Burke, Donald Barrell, Andrew Abraham, Jamie Poolton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Research has suggested that competition within talent identification and development systems should be modified from the adult format of the sport to meet the developmental needs of those participating. Yet limited research has evaluated the success of game changes, particularly the effectiveness of modifying the rules of a game to purposefully engineer changes in player behaviour. The purpose of this study was to monitor the impact of rule modifications on player behaviour within a talent identification and development system in rugby union. Performance indicators (ball in play, pass, offload, kick) were collected during full length (70 min) and shortened durations (30–42 min) of competitive matches played during a weeklong under sixteen rugby union festival in 2016 and after rule modifications were introduced in 2017–2019. The findings indicate that rule modifications had the prescribed impact on player actions, particularly in the shortened duration formats of the game. Therefore, rule modifications provide talent developers a tool to manipulate player behaviour, in this case skill attempts, within full-sided competitive matches.
Original languageEnglish
Article number23
Pages (from-to)2670-2676
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
Volume38
Issue number23
Early online date20 Jul 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Sports Sciences, on 20/07/2021, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/02640414.2020.1795559

Copyright © and Moral Rights are retained by the author(s) and/ or other copyright owners. A copy can be downloaded for personal non-commercial research or study, without prior permission or charge. This item cannot be reproduced or quoted extensively from without first obtaining permission in writing from the copyright holder(s). The content must not be changed in any way or sold commercially in any format or medium without the formal permission of the copyright holders.

Keywords

  • Rule modifications
  • rugby union
  • decision-making
  • match-duration
  • talent identification & development

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