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Lucy Callingham -

Working as part of an all Female Coaching Team (part 2)

It was only on Sunday after our last game of the season did I realise we were an all-female coaching team. Maybe that?s a good thing, that their knowledge and experience was the main reason I choose them to help, and that it had taken me this long to notice how rare an all female coaching set up in our sport.

Taking this into account I decided to ask them some questions on the past year.

Sammi Bannard

What has been your highlights about working with the team?

The sense of achievement and pride you get when you see them improve. Seeing some of them as complete beginners at the start of the year and develop in to full players with good technical knowledge and physical ability feels great. Also seeing those with experience grow as leaders and develop the other players too.

What are the next steps in your coaching career/Plans for next season?

I am proudly moving on to join the Navy, but I will miss sharing my knowledge and learning from the girls. Unfortunately my coaching career will be put on hold for a few years, but I do play to play for the Navy?s team.

What has it been like working with an all female coaching team and what have you learned?

Working with women makes you feel respected and taken seriously, there comes with it a sense of unity. I realised I know more about the technical side of rugby than I thought and I actually find it easier to coach that I thought.

What messages do you have to give to together female coaches out there and girls wanting to get involved in coaching?

It is an experience that will show you who you really are and what you can really do, so go for it, share your love for your sport and teach others to love it too.

Mel Ferguson

What has been your highlights about working with the team??

Definitely has to be varsity! Having not been able to watch them play for the uni before?I was so impressed with how hard they worked, the passion and character they showed for the whole game under some difficult circumstances. It was incredible to watch.

What are your plans for next season and the next steps in?coaching career??

I?am excited about another?year working with?UOBWRFC. I also hope to?start working with?some other teams and gaining more experiences and challenges with other sports.?The next step for me is to start working towards becoming a recognised Strength & Conditioning coach and continue to build on the experiences I already have.

What has it been like working with all female coaching team??

I think it’s a very unique set up. Another great thing is that?we?have all played?university sport and had some roles of leadership while we were there, whether its with?football or rugby, so we can also bring that experience as well. We’ve all been made to feel part of the team and not just a coach – so its been lots of fun too!

What have I learned about yourself and do you have any messages for other female coaches?

The best thing about working with sports teams is that you’re always learning as you go. You’re learning about what they enjoy and don’t enjoy, how they learn and how they like to be coached. It allows you as the coach to continue to learn and develop as every team is different. Mostly, I have learned I have the confidence and ability to do what I love. So, I would encourage any aspiring?female coaches, whether they’re into sports, skills or fitness, to go for it.? Challenge yourself and?take every opportunity?you get to help you along the way!!

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