Monday, 23 July 2012

Let's Play Piggy-In-The-Middle

On Saturday I got my Level 1 rugby coaching ticket, which means I can teach kids up to 12 to play rugby. I also get to wear a knee support for a few days, but that's another story. 

These days rugby is more about 'social and personal development' and getting the skills right than 'winning' or even 'participating'. That's because the International Rugby Board is not only keen to contrast the game from the many ugly aspects of football but is also listening to the harshest sports critics of all: children. So we value teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship. 'Drills' have been replaced by 'small-sided games' built on age-old playground games which are active, purposeful, enjoyable and safe (and naturally promote balance, co-ordination, agility and speed). Coaches have responsibility for developing the 'whole person', with the emphasis on competence, confidence, connection, character and creativity. Gone are the old touch-line tirades. Now we ask the players to explain what's working and what isn't - and why. 

And it works.
So I got to thinking: if an institution as entrenched as the good ol' Rugby Football Union can change this much from the grassroots, why can't some of our other institutions?
I mean, the various peer-to-peer platforms have simply re-imagined retail banking as just a giant game of piggy-in-the-middle: savers, get your cash directly to those who need it without the 'piggy' bank intercepting it. Go!

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