John Mitchell, ex All Blacks player and coach who is famous for guiding the Lions to Currie Cup Victory, will teach approximately 2 400 rugby players from 40 schools around South Africa about what it takes to ‘Power Through’ from school boy rugby to Super Rugby and beyond. He will be demonstrating new techniques, drills and give guidance on other performance related aspects of training, like hydration, before, during and after matches.
Powerade, the official hydration sponsor of the Vodacom Super Rugby, commissioned John Mitchell to devise a programme to help both school coaches and players to excel in the competitive – and exciting – game of rugby. He will impart his wealth of rugby knowledge and experience on coaches and players via the Powerade Performance Sessions.
The 40 Schools, from a total of 100, won a Powerade Performance Session with Mitchell after collecting the most Powerade caps in the ‘Powerade Collect a Cap’ competition that ran in March and April 2013.
“We could not have won a Powerade Performance Session with John Mitchell without the support of the entire school,” said Kurt Nero, coach of Amanzimtoti High School, KwaZulu-Natal. “When our principal found out about the competition he announced it in assembly, we erected posters all over the school and had support from the Tuck Shop.”
When asked what he would like to get out of the Session he said: “I want John to talk about performance factors like the importance of good nutrition and adequate hydration as well as mental strength, but most importantly I want him to stress that rugby is a game of skill and it is not about how big you are and one can score a try without brute force. Rugby is not just a contact sport.”
Mitchell’s program is designed with Powerade’s ‘Power Through’ philosophy in mind giving coaches the necessary tools to develop their athletes. The philosophy focuses on finding strength, conviction and belief in those moments of low performance, self-doubt or discouragement. It is the role of a coach to motivate, inspire as well as providing useful information on training regimes to assist their athletes when facing challenges, which they will do at every level in their sport.
“We want to inspire and motivate young individuals to make sure they maintain their forward momentum and achieve their goals. We know that coaches also play the role of mentor and guidance counselor and we want to empower coaches who will in turn inspire the players,” said Trivern Chetty, Brand Manager- Sports and Energy at The Coca-Cola Company.
Coaches that come into contact with Mitchell during these campaigns will also be able to stay up to date with peak performance by means of signing up for the communications, developed by the ex-All Blacks and Lions coach himself. A select group of coaches will receive a training tips newsletter twice a month from John. This communication will take the form of skills training content, pictures and links to video demonstrations from the Powerade Performance Sessions as well as great competitions to participate in.
But the Powerade Schools Programme is far from over. The schools can continue to collect Powerade caps until 14 June. The school that collects the most caps will get tickets for the entire school to go and watch a Super Rugby game in their province.
Next weeks will all start at 15:00 and finish at 17:00 and will be held at the following schools:
1. 20 May: Hoërskool Wonderboom – Pretoria
2. 21 May: Hoërskool Jeugland – Kempton Park
3. 23 May: Hoërskool Pretoria Noord – Pretoria