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The Breakdown with Sir Graham Henry

The least number of breakdowns you can have the better you will play but its a big part of the game and you need the skills to play there. This video will take you through a range of skill activities, identifying individuals roles and responsibilities at the breakdown.

Part 1. The Breakdown   40:53 Member content

The least number of breakdowns you can have the better you will play but its a big part of the game and you need the skills to play there. This video will take you through a range of skill activities, identifying individuals roles and responsibilities at the breakdown.

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Course Part 1
Extras Includes a companion PDF
Duration 40:53
Topics Breakdown Espanol
Applicable to Coaches  
Languages English , Español

Click on CC button at top left of video for other translation options.

Course reviews

Really good break down of the emphasis of the skill break down in the drill to help improve the players mindset of there decison making around keeping the ball alive and making better decisions! Really enjoyed it

New Zealand



That was bloody awesome. The best coaching video ever that teaches positive attitude, making quick decisions and keeping the ball alive.


please Japanese?


Very good & informative. Thank you :)


Sensational video, this will allow any coach to fine tune the basic skills of their team.


Great, great video!!


As a beginner junior coach I found this video awesome, it broke the breakdown elements down to a good teaching level. plus great emphasize on keeping the ball alive and trying to avoid a breakdown situation. Fantastic!

New Zealand

Really enjoyed this video, as ever some absolute gems from the master Graham Henry. Good to hear he never wavers from the “fewer breakdowns the better” message. Sometimes we get drawn into contact “just because” and its useful to hear even the AB’s work on such basic but vital stuff, no doubt at a ridiculous intensity though!


Really helpful the way it broke down the play into the constituent elements and then put it all together at the end. Made sense of the jigsaw.


Hi Nick, apologies for the mix up, we’ve now updated the pdf with the correct stills from this video. The Rugby Site Team

New Zealand

I like the mindset shift, if actually emphasizing the need to avoid the breakdown. Shame the companion PDF has stills from a different video (on tackling/tracking in P2)


All these videos, I have seen them all, they have really progressed me as a coach. I am very grateful for the development I have made, as a result. Thank you.


great video ,will be using it next training

New Zealand

As a junior coach it provided me with a stark reminder to get back to basics. Nice one.

New Zealand


New Zealand

This is an opportunity of a life time. Learning from the best. Great video.


This video is a bit of a sleeper; the more I watch it the more value I get out of it. It is not about rucking but instead shows good basic techniques for keeping the ball alive, allowing players to discover for themselves what works and what doesn’t.


I love watching this video – the mind shift that we are actively and actually trying to avoid the breakdown is spot on. It’s where we give away most penalties and where we actively have to release the ball (when tackled) in efect being half way to losing it. The premis and idea that we work smart to avoid simply running in to defenders and going to ground – the scourge of attacking rugby – is as brilliant as it is simple. Those who simply want to see how 6-7-8 men join a ruck/maul and try to make it an exact science simply don’t get the importance of what is done before this and how to avoid the static and slow breakdown. Well done Graham. And that from an Englishman!!!

New Zealand

great vid on how to avoid the breakdown. it gives good ideas at the beginning of a maul. also gives food for thought on areas that we as coaches can develop further. awesome!

New Zealand

Great video by sir GH, and would agree the fewer break downs there are the better the game, and as coaches we should be coaching players from a young age how to avoid the break down. But as we know at some stage the break down will be inevitable and we should practice what happens when a break down accours. Some one said to me once, when i drive my car home i don’t want to brake down but i plan for when it do’s beake down. Would like to see another video which goes into more detail of how to deal with the threats at the break down and different clear out techniques.


“we should avoid breakdowns, keep the ball alive, hold the ball in 2 hands, fix defenders” good to hear it from Sir GH himself!


I have coached track and field for 35 years, but this year we are starting a rugby team, at our high school, so the boys who are playing and myself, are all new to the game. As someone starting from scratch, I found the video, to be very helpful and enjoyable. Very good for a rookie rugby coach like myself.


There was not enough detail on how to build the ruck, and there were too many passing drills for avoiding the breakdown. This was not realistic for day to day coaching where the defence mostly, easily gets amongst the attackers in closely matched sides. Rucks happen a lot and rucks must be foolproof, over and over again. I would have appreciated a set of ’do’s and don’ts’’ for the ball carrier as he is being stopped, and in detail. The same goes for the nearest players who hit the ruck. The demo squad never got out of a trot and most faults were repeated instead of being corrected. The idea that mauls should be encouraged was intriguing, and the pattern that was demonstrated was useful. More time on that would have been appreciated since mauls are more easy to spoil than rucks. To sum up: This was entertaining, as usual with Graham Henry, but, not very useful for the actual business of playing real games. Advanced coaching should be included, should be labelled as such and should include the latest developments. For example, when Mike Cron delivers lessons on the scrum his CD’s contain details which are not found anywhere else on the internet. I appreciate the concept of this site and have bought 15 videos so far, some of which do the business really well. Dan Carter’s video on decision making in attack used computer graphics very well to help the coach to teach the No.10 to scan effectively. I get sick of the same old same old…make it more difficult, with what works and what does not work these days. Please, some advanced coaching.


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