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Car ride home
After a game of rugby, the car ride from the ground to home can be overwhelming for children.Whether they played well or not, adults in the car often takes the drive home as the perfect opportunity to give them a breakdown of the game – what they could have done better, how the coach or referee performed and who played badly.“Why didn’t Tim pass?”“Sarah should have kicked!”“I just want them to stop it!”For the past hour they’ve been immersed in rugby with any number of adults telling them what to do, where to stand, when to run, when to take a breath. Now their parent has started up and they can’t escape – cars are very confined spaces.The ride home is a good time to let players reflect and shape their own thoughts on the game – win or lose.Players know when they’ve played skilfully or poorly – they don’t need adults to point it out.So, what do you say on the car ride home? It’s easy – nothing!Males in particular are comfortable in silences – they don’t need conversation.If you feel the need for conversation, or your young rugby player is chatting away happily enough about the game, here are some helpful things you can say:“Did you enjoy yourself today?”“I love watching you play rugby.”“Which part of the game did you enjoy most?”“I am so proud of you.”“Anything you want to do now?”You might be surprised at some of the answers.