When rugby arrives at school: CO Le Puy’s initiative to discover the discipline

The members of CO Le Puy rugby have understood this: despite a very real anchor, the practice of the oval ball still gains to be known in the city of the ponote. For this reason, the club has been carrying out, since last year, the school project “in view of the Rugby World Cup France 2023 and the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris 2024.

“During the pandemic, we had already conducted fun workshops for schoolchildren. There, the aim is to exploit these international events to democratize both women’s and men’s rugby and change its image as a violent sport, “explains Damien Comunello, head of the agglomeration rugby school. Du Puy.

An end of year tournamentThe program thus began last September, at the beginning of the school year, in sixteen schools in the agglomeration (eight public and eight private). Equipped with cones, balls and chasubles, the students were able to learn how to handle the oval ball. A cycle of twelve sessions led in part by their school teachers and CO Le Puy Rugby members.

The CO Le Puy rugby school curriculum will be renewed next year and will run until July 2024. Photo Dominique Lemoine

“At the start of the cycle they learned to run with the ball, to stand out and then, as the sessions progressed, they were introduced to contact. “Following these twelve sessions, the apprentice rugby players, wearing their banners in the shape of rugby shirts that they will have previously personalized, will compete in two tournaments organized next June at the Lafayette stadium, in Puy-en-Velay. . The program will be renewed next year and will last until July 2024. Or maybe even beyond, as Damien Comunello confides. “It will depend on the position of the club. One thing is certain, we will continue to organize events in schools, but perhaps in another way. “

Democratize the practice a little more

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CO Le Puy continues to federate. Aware of its anchorage, its presidents intend to do everything to perpetuate the practice of this discipline within the agglomeration.
After more than 110 years of existence, CO Le Puy has not lost its charm. Even better, it never stopped gathering more and more followers. And this despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Unlike other sports, we made it through this period relatively well. The rugby school did not suffer, despite the lack of competition. We were also able to maintain the number of seniors “, analyzes Gérard Roméas, co-president of the club.

A desire to grow

To date, CO Le Puy has nearly 360 members, ranking at the top of the largest clubs in the Haute-Loire and sixth in the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region. With the return to training and matches, Gérard Roméas and the club management intend to democratize more and more the management of the oval ball to compete with that of the round ball perhaps one day. “Today all countries have a football team, which is not the case with rugby. That’s why we want to keep growing. “

Domenico Lemoine

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