Minis

The Crusaders Minis Programme is the largest and most successful in North America, producing many past, current and most certainly future Ontario Provincial and Canadian International players!

We are proud of our committed volunteer coaches that work hard to create a fun and respectful learning environment whilst at the same time giving our Minis players a solid grounding in the wonderful sport of Rugby, one of North America’s fastest growing grass level sports.

Join the Crusaders Minis programme and become part of an inclusive playing and socially active volunteer based club that has been leading the way in Canadian club rugby since 1968!

Throughout the season CRU runs many social events, from Victoria Day Fireworks display to BBQ’s, Men and Woman Seniors, Visiting and Touring team games to watch and a very socially vibrant clubhouse and deck where players and family are welcome to enjoy hot summer days and warm evenings watching rugby activities.   At the Crusaders you will be part of a club, not just a team!

U8/U10/U12 Games are at local area club tournaments, around one per month May through September, with the CRU Minis Home Tourney held in July.

CO-ED Minis Programme

The Head Coaches for the Mini age grade are:

Age GradeHead CoachEmail
U6TBAU6 email
U8Erika ProcterU8 email
U10Angela JacksonU10 email
U12Jason BoggsU12 email

Please click the tabs below to see more information.

What do you remember about your rugby days? The friends? The laughs? That great run? The awesome string of passes? Maybe it’s the great stories about how your team did at that tournament?

If you’ve ever played rugby, you’ll have plenty of memories like these.

The U8 program provides a safe environment where kids can begin capturing these same great rugby memories. U8 puts FUN in rugby fundamentals. Our objectives are for kids to:

  • Have fun!
  • Participate in safe, healthy, active living
  • Learn the fundamentals of rugby and competition

There are 5 principles for the U8 team:

  1. Run forward
  2. Pass backward
  3. Stay in Bounds
  4. Listen to the coach
  5. Have fun!

We are part of great rugby community and show our support by participating as spectators and honour guards at home games for Team Canada.

What you need to participate:

  • Gotta like to have fun. Fun is as much a part of the game of rugby as the spin pass.
  • Enjoy running around and around and around…
  • Own a comfortable pair of cleats to run around in. Cleats need to be rubber or plastic without a toe cleat.
  • Have black shorts and long black sports socks. Rugby shorts are short. Basketball and soccer shorts are longer and baggy.  Wear what feels comfortable but if you can be comfortable in rugby shorts, that’s ideal. These can be obtained using the Crusader On-Line Shop.
  • Possess a mouth guard. The mouth guard is primarily for concussion protection so it’s the right habit for the kids to develop. However, some kids can’t find one that is comfortable.  For comparison, the U8 flag rugby risk is a lot like kids playing tag in the playground.

Training Dates:

Practice Saturday mornings starting on May 7 from 9-10:30, except when there is a tournament or a long weekend

What you can expect from the season:

  • Seven (7) tournaments in the GTA (Burlington, Oakville, Brantford, Fergus, Markham, Toronto)Caring adults coaching your child to develop their rugby skills
  • Participation-based coaching that encourages equal playing time. Kids would rather play on a losing team than ride the pine on a winning team.
  • Open door for parents to participate and to share their observations. We can talk all you want before or after practice and games. Let’s keep the focus on the kids during practice and games.

Registration information can be found in the registration section of the website.

If you have more questions, you can email Erika Daniels at u8@oakvillecrusaders.com

U10 Flag Rugby Program

U10_3The Crusaders Mini Rugby Program is a fun way to introduce and develop the joy of rugby in a friendly and safe environment. By developing the principles for the love of physical activity, team work, and the skills of rugby at early ages, we are aiming to ingrain strong values and skills that can be used throughout a lifetime and career.

Mini rugby is the start of a long term development model of a successful rugby player, or for some simply the beginning of an enjoyable and healthy fulfilling lifestyle.

The U10 flag rugby program will build on the development gained from the U8 program, and will introduce the game of rugby to those that are new to the sport. While the focus of the program is on fun, physical movement, and teamwork, with an overarching goal of developing an understanding of the game, we also want children to have the opportunity to develop strong fundamentals for rugby through knowledgeable coaching.

In order to ensure a child’s best chance for success, our coaches are provided with appropriate training and resources. Many of our coaches are former or current senior players – they volunteer their time because they are passionate about teaching children this great game!

In rugby at any level, rarely can one player take over or control a game; rugby is a true team sport and needs everyone’s participation, dedication, and team work in order to succeed. These requirements mean that every player must move with and follow the play in order to be involved and support their teammates for the team to succeed.

Skills that will be focused on throughout the year will be running, passing, catching, creating space on attack, and alignment on defense. These skills will be developed in training, fun exercises, game simulations, and through the various festival tournaments that we will be involved in. The Crusaders U10 program is an excellent place to increase a child’s overall skill development and knowledge of the game in a risk free environment.

Training & Game Times

Training – 6:30 – 8:00 PM Thursday evenings.

Training – 9:00 – 10:30 AM Saturday mornings.

For 2016, training starts May 7th

Tournaments – 9:00-12:30 PM on Saturdays or Sundays, approximately one every three weeks, May thru August hosted by rugby clubs running similar U10 programs.

The first one for 2016 is May 28th in Burlington.

What is Flag Rugby?

U10_2Flag Rugby is a fun and exciting form of non-contact rugby suitable for boys and girls of all ages and abilities. There are no scrums, line-outs, or tackling allowed in flag rugby. Flag rugby is an excellent way of being introduced to some of the basic skills of rugby such as running, passing, and catching in a fun and safe environment.

Flag Rugby has the following advantages over traditional games:
shows clearly when a tackle is made and prevents arguments

  • allows players to easily officiate their own games
  • gives a real incentive for defenders to defend
  • momentarily takes the ‘tackler’ out of the game as would occur in full contact rugby, allowing more time and space for the attacking team
  • encourages defenders to attack at the hips, as is required for solid proper tacking in later stages of rugby
  • encourages the correct lines of running required for success in the full 15 per side game
  • most importantly – Flag Rugby is a fun game that can be played by everyone

U12 Modified Contact Rugby Program

U12_1

The Crusaders Mini Rugby Program is a fun way to introduce and develop the joy of rugby in a friendly and safe environment. By developing the principles for the love of physical activity, team work, and the skills of rugby at early ages, we are aiming to ingrain strong values and skills that can be used throughout a lifetime and career. Mini rugby is the start of a long term development model of a successful rugby player, or for some simply the beginning of an enjoyable and healthy fulfilling lifestyle.

The U12 modified contact rugby program is co-ed. welcoming boys and girls and will build on the development gained during the U8 and U10 programs, and introduces more of aspects and skills of the full game in a controlled and graduated manner. We encourage children who are new to rugby, this is a perfect age to start and they will find that, within a very few weeks, they are able to fully participate in the training program, scrimmages, games and tournaments.

While the focus of the program is on fun, physical movement, and teamwork, with an overarching goal of developing an understanding of the game; we also want children to have the opportunity to develop strong fundamentals for rugby through knowledgeable coaching. In order to ensure a child’s best chance for success, our coaches are provided with appropriate training and resources, and many of our coaches are former and current senior players.

In rugby at any level, rarely can one player take over or control a game; rugby is a true team sport and needs everyone’s participation, dedication, and team work in order to succeed. These requirements mean that every player must move with and follow the play in order to be involved and support their teammates for the team to succeed.

Skills that will be focused on throughout the year will be running, passing, catching, creating space on attack, and alignment on defense. These skills will be developed in training, fun exercises, game simulations, and through the various festival tournaments that we will be involved in throughout the season. The Crusaders U12 program is an excellent place to increase a child’s overall skill development, knowledge of the game and level of fitness.

Training & Game Times

  • Training – 6:30 – 8:00 PM Thursday evenings
  • Training – 9:00 – 11:00 AM Saturday mornings. Training starts Saturday May 7th
  • Festivals – Saturday / Sunday Mornings (schedule to be confirmed, approximately two per month)
  • The last festival is at end of August, but additional rugby is planned for the fall.

Playing Equipment

  • Mouthguard – mandatory for training and games
  • Cleats – rugby or soccer. NO METAL STUDS
  • Jersey – Club provided
  • Shorts – black
  • Socks – black
  • Water bottle – named

Mouthguards are mandatory for all training sessions and games. Low cost home molded mouthguards can be obtained from any sports shop for between $10 – $40. A dental technician or doctor fitted custom mouthguard is highly recommended. They are far less bulky, fit precisely and stay in place (cost between $45 – $80).

Rugby or soccer cleats are required. Soccer cleats are most common. Please avoid or replace metal studs as they provide no advantage on hard fields and frequently injure other players.

The Crusaders will be providing club jerseys, please be patient with our suppliers.

No glasses / eyewear or jewelry are allowed at training sessions or games as they can potentially cause injury.

What is U12 Modified Contact Rugby?

U12 Modified Contact Rugby is a fun and exciting form of rugby suitable for boys and girls to develop the fundamental skills and experience of the full game in a safe and controlled environment.

We replace Flag with the concept of safe tackling to stop ball carriers. We introduce the concepts of scrums and line-outs; however these are static and not contested. Rucks and mauls (contesting for the ball in open play) are not allowed. Modified contact rugby is an excellent way of introduce the basic skills of rugby such as running, passing, catching and tackling in a fun and safe environment.

Each team has 7 players (3 forwards and 4 backs) on the field at any one time, with unlimited substitutions. Players may be replaced at whistles/stoppage in play (tackles are not stoppages in play).

Object of the game is to score more tries than the opposition, by passing the ball backward and carrying the ball forward over the goal-line and grounding the ball to score a try.

The opposition defend their try line by tackling ball carriers in a safe manner. The attacking team is allowed 6 attempts (tackles) to score a try. After the 6th tackle possession of the ball is turned over to the defending side. Play resumes with an uncontested 3 person scrum. If the ball is taken out of play across the sidelines, possession is turned over to the defending team and play is restarted with a 2 person line-out.

Each try is worth 1 point. Games are restarted after tries are scored and at the beginning of the game and the 2nd half by a drop kick, which must travel forward 7m to be in play.

Games are played in 2 halves of 10 minutes, each with a 2 minute break between play. Field size is approximately 50m x 35m wide.