“What’s the best way for me to get a strength & conditioning job in professional rugby?” This is a common question I receive so I thought would write this as I feel I can shed some light on this.
Last week I was asked this question and I have a 3 step process for the answer (this can be accelerated with doing all the elements more intensively and passionately than anyone else out there).
Get a job with an amateur club. There are 6500 of them registered in the UK (RFU website). Most of them will snap your hand off if you offer them support and help for free.
Do a brilliant job for a few years.
Earn your stripes, make loads of mistakes, network with other coaches and other support staff.
Most importantly turn up and make a difference.
Get a job with a semi pro club. There are a few hundred out there in the UK. The cream rises. Be that cream.
Once again earn your stripes, network with other coaches and other support staff. Make some more mistakes and put a few more years in.
Work with some other sports and get even more experience.
Turn up every day and make a difference.
Master the art of adding value.
Maybe you’ll go through a few clubs at this level. Enjoy the different environments.
Get a job with a professional club. There are currently about 24 (premiership and championship) in the UK. Probability theory states that most people will not get these jobs.
With that in mind what is your point of difference? What do you do that no one else can do?
Have some interviews, make mistakes in them. Master the art of the interview. That is, the ability to present your ideas and demonstrate your value whilst not coming across like a poor cultural fit for that team and environment.
Get the job, start at the bottom and work your way up over a few more years minimum. Remember the cream rises, so you’ll need to keep sharpening the sword every day.
Hopefully this 3 step process is simple.
But it is not easy.
The beautiful thing is part way through step 1 you will know if step 2 and 3 are for you.
So just get started!
PS this is not simply about professional rugby.