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May. 11th, 2005

Tuesday is always a heavy practice. We're preparing for a big tournament in Newport this weekend, so last night we worked on a lot of fundamentals. After exercises, we did a lot of tackling and ball possession drills. It's hard to break some of my football habits, such as not getting tackled and not fumbling. In rugby, it's often preferable to go down instead of fighting through the tackle, and once I hit the deck I have to release the ball, hopefully towards my teammates.

By the time we started practicing lineouts, my right arm was dead. I was holding my mouthpiece in my right hand and it was shaking uncontrollably. Dozer hit me playfully in the upper right arm, and pain shot unexpectedly through it. I did not have a lot of functional strength left at that point for lifting during the lineouts.

Dozer said to me that I need to "start using my left." I assumed he was using his rugby player mentality to make a crude remark and responded in kind. But he looked at me and asked, seriously, "What side do you tackle with?" Well, I am right-handed, and I have been favoring my right side when I make hits. And that was his point -- I need to learn how to use both sides of my body when rucking or making tackles. If only my right shoulder and arm take a beating, the repetitive stress could cause me injury.

I went home and iced down my arm. I should be okay by Saturday. I doubt I'll get the start, since Fergal has been playing his entire life and is a much better player; but I should see plenty of playing time, since Fergal is older and has ankle and fitness issues, and since I've proven I can hold my own. (There are no B-side games this weekend that I'm aware of.)


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 11th, 2005 09:45 am (UTC)
Well its proabaly good to be a student of the game this weekend and learn a lesson like you did yesterday.
May. 11th, 2005 09:53 am (UTC)
They know I pick things up quickly. And, judging by the number of reps I got with the A side yesterday, I do expect to see at least a half's worth of action, maybe more if Fergal gets injured or exhausted and they decide to keep Keith at hooker rather than sliding him out to loose-head prop and bringing Jeff S. to play hooker.
May. 11th, 2005 07:51 pm (UTC)
It sounds like good advice to not favor your strong side all of the time. I can also appreciate how football habits could cause problems in rugby.

It also sounds as if your new team values you, wants to make you more productive and generally enjoy the sport. That doesn't always happen.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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