• Rugby activity continuing online
  • Webinars aimed at ensuring optimal alignment and capacity when rugby restarts
  • World Rugby Virtual High Performance Academy launches
  • World Rugby match official education launches
  • More than 20 training and education modules available on World Rugby Passport site

In a ground-breaking initiative, World Rugby’s High Performance, Match Officials and Training and Education functions are sharing knowledge and expertise online via a series of webinars as part of a reset and readiness strategy for when global rugby activities are safe and ready to resume.

Delivered as a series of webinars and online content, the strategy will promote best practice in match management, match officiating, match preparation and leadership via a dedicated series of workstreams delivered online by World Rugby management, coaches and match officials.

At the heart of the strategy is the World Rugby Virtual High Performance Academy. Set to launch in early May, the Academy will provide a suite of resources and activities based on six curriculum areas: coaching, athletic performance, match officials, performance analytics, high performance and leadership.

It will be available to the whole elite performance environment from national coaches and staff through to the elite domestic personnel in the form of video resources and training tools and TED talk style webinars via YouTube. A key objective of the virtual Academy is to ensure that the positive momentum in technical upskilling achieved in the emerging high performance unions over the last Rugby World Cup cycle, is maintained during this period of national team inactivity and that union high performance staff are ready to restart once competition campaigns resume.

With rugby currently in shutdown across the globe, World Rugby High Performance 15s Match Official Manager Alain Rolland has begun delivering workshops for emerging union referees and referee managers aimed at enhancing alignment and consistency. The project began with a webinar on the breakdown delivered to personnel in both South America and North America.

In the field of training and education World Rugby is continuing to work on upgrades to the established Passport online learning hub. Regional Training Managers are working with their member unions to identify needs and deliver online learning within their region. There are more than 20 online modules available alongside other resources which can be utilised virtually.


World Rugby Chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “As we navigate the unprecedented global challenge caused by the COVID-19 situation, we are using the lockdown environment as an opportunity to ensure that the sport is in optimal position when we restart by sharing knowledge, delivering courses and building further capacity through a series of ground-breaking webinars and workshops.

“This activity is creating engagement across the globe and will enable us to continue to roll out our leadership programme and activities even though we are unable to have any face-to-face contact. It is a model for the future and one that I am sure will be very successful in strengthening our sport.”