St Joseph’s College already plays a huge role in the schools rugby world with its prestigious St Joseph’s Festival every October, brining some of the top schools and players in the country to Suffolk.
Year on year thrilling moments of top quality rugby are seen at the Festival, with the passion and enthusiasm for the game regularly a true inspiration. This summer the school will be playing another major role in inspiring young players as they host PSA Academies for their East England Rugby Academy from Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August.
We spoke last week to PSA Academies founder, and former France captain and coach, Philippe Saint-André, their Head of Rugby, former Munster and Leicester Tigers wing Johne Murphy, about PSA Academies, their philosophy, and what makes their high-performance camps different. (You can see more of that here: Fifteen Rugby speaks to Philippe Saint-André and Johne Murphy.)
What stood out, for us, was their shared passion for the game and for developing young players both on and off the field, their personal hands on involvement serving to highlight that, and giving young players the chance to experience a genuinely professional environment but in a relaxed and enjoyable way.
Using their own version of the C.A.R.D.S. system, first implemented by the RFU, player development, fun, and engagement will be at the heart of the week, whether that be on the pitch assessing and working on core skills, in the gym working on age appropriate strength & conditioning, developing teamwork and leadership across a variety of activities, or through interactive talks from leading sports science professionals.
A top coaching team with extensive experience at Academy and professional levels in both the men’s and women’s games will be looking after the players, aged from 9-17. Meanwhile, there will also be a dedicated Girls rugby development programme, which spans 3 days. The players are split into three groups, Minis (9-11), Intermediates (12-15), and Advanced (16-17), ensuring that each player gets the very most from the programme alongside their peers.
It will not just be about learning new on field skills though, players will receive education on nutrition, analysis, and how to understand the data they are given, and the fact that PSA Academies have such a strong roster of high performance sports tech partners, such as Shadowman Sports, Shadow Ball, STATSports, and Titan Wellness will only add to the experience, leaving every player with a very realistic experience of the type of training environment enjoyed by top academy or pro rugby players.
The experience will continue beyond the week of the camp, with each player receiving a detailed independent player development report , a key part of the PSA Academy East England experience. The report will give valuable insight into the current skill and physical performance levels of each player, plus the key work on areas in order to maximise their long-term rugby potential.
The concept is to focus on each individual player, with a high coach to player ratio so that each individual can be given the tools to best develop their game, both during and after the camp. With any luck the camp will see plenty of graduates become future stars of the St Joseph’s Festival, and with each player receiving a PSA Rugby Academy player pack there will be plenty of new stash too!
Indeed take up from St Joseph’s pupils, and many others besides, has been high already, so look out for future St Jo’s teams having a real crack at the title with some exciting, highly skilled, and confident players. With plenty of space for more to join the summer camp though, the competition is sure to be high.
As part of our partnership with PSA Academies, they are offering some great opportunities for young players to attend the PSA Rugby Academy East England at St Joseph’s College, including a competition with four free places at the camp. If you’re not lucky enough to win that, there’s a 10% early booking discount available for www.fifteenrugby.com readers for the East England or any other PSA Rugby Academies this summer.
To enter the competition to win a free place at the St Joseph’s camp, just follow this link: PSA Rugby Academy, East England competition.
Remember, you can also get 10% off for your place at any one of the fantastic high performance programmes from PSA Academies in the UK, Ireland, or France when quoting 15RUGBYOFFER on your booking at www.psaacademies.com