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Girls and Activity

girls playing rugby

Photo: RFU Archive

As women’s rugby continues to grow more girls are taking up the sport particularly in the schools game.  Rugby Union can provide an outlet for girls of all ages, sizes and abilities to play.  With over 46% girls taking part in the RFU’s primary school programme, it’s a great opportunity to launch in your school.

Developing rugby with your school

For year 7 and 8 the RFU and RFUW have introduced Tag to Tackle.  This is fast pace version of the game that brings in the contact element over a period of time in order to bridge the gap between tag and the contact versions of the game. There is a new teaching resource available to schools to support Tag to Tackle.

Age bands

From September 2011 the girl’s game will have three age bands to support the continued development of the girl’s game particularly within education.  This means that girls can be introduced to rugby and then develop their skills at a pace that suits them. The supporting information for Schools document offers more information on the new age boundaries and the contact details of RFU staff who will help kick start your Girl’s programme.

U13s Age-Band

  • This age-band will be brought in from September 1, 2011
  • Girls players must be Aged 11 and 12 on the September 1, 2011
  • The format will be Tag to Tackle

U15s Age-Band

  • Girls players must be aged 13 and 14 on September 1, 2011
  • The format will be full contact 13-aside rugby as per the current rules and regulations

U18s Age-Band

  • Girls players must be 15, 16 or 17 on September 1 
  • The format will be full contact 15-aside rugby as per the current rules and regulations, other variations will be permitted with reduced numbers where necessary
  • Once a player has their 18th birthday, they are permitted to play senior rugby as well as continuing to play U18s rugby. Please ensure the welfare of the player in considered


The Girls Year 7 and 8 Schools Competition is designed to promote and encourage rugby in schools by providing local competitive opportunities right through to national finals.  Introduced in 2010, the programme provides a great pathway for girls to not only play in school but link into their local rugby club too.  This of course means they have an outlet for their rugby outside school too and the school itself can link into its local community.

Rules of play

To get your school team involved contact your local women’s development officer or your rugby development officer.


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