When sports becomes the subject of a conversation it is rarely about a women’s team. Most sports have endless differences between the two genders. The rules of the game, the equipment required, the pay of professional athletes and the speed of the game are a few of the many examples. That is until the subject changes to rugby.
Women’s rugby and men’s rugby are THE SAME!
The game of rugby does not differ between genders. They play with the same rules, on the same size field, the same set up, and very often the same strategies. The women go into scrums, they ruck after tackles, they form mauls, and they will tackle an opponent just as hard as the men will.
In the United States all of mens and most of women’s rugby is run by USA Rugby (United States of America Rugby Football Union). USA Rugby has established everything from code of conducts and disciplinary procedures for the players to stating the bylaws. They oversee all ages and levels of rugby, rookie/youth to the senior level, coaches and referees.
The ONE AND ONLY difference between the men and women is that recently the NCAA has started to take over women’s rugby. Because of Title IX all schools with sports under the NCAA must have the same amount of opportunities for both male and female student athletes. Adding rugby to the mix creates a team with a large amount of participants that can be offered new opportunity without costing the school a lot of money.
The reason the NCAA has started to take over women’s rugby and not men’s is because most schools big enough to create a full rugby team already consists of a football team. Football teams require large amounts of participants, meaning that the school is giving out many opportunities to male students. Adding a women’s rugby team helps even out the amount of opportunities between the two genders. With the increasing amount of interest in the female population with rugby this has become more possible for all schools to do.
REMEMBER rugby is a sport that can be learned and played by anyone! Go to usarugby.org to find somewhere near you that is involved in rugby and give it a try! I did and now it is my life.