Eugene, Ore. - Physical education classes in Lane County schools are set to get a taste of the latest Olympic sport. Former US rugby international Troy Hall will be in Eugene on Sunday, March 17, to train volunteers to demonstrate basic sevens rugby skills to students. Sevens rugby, a fast and flowing game played by two teams of seven athletes each, will feature in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
“Introducing rugby to boys and girls in PE is a fantastic way to showcase our sport and have them fall in love with the game,” Hall says. “Rugby is an action-packed sport, inclusive, and it keeps the kids moving the entire time."
The volunteers include women and men from the University of Oregon’s rugby teams. Once they have been trained by Hall as Rugby Development Instructors, their efforts will help raise the profile of sevens ahead of its Olympic debut.
Roosevelt Middle School and Spencer Butte Middle School will be the first to experience this sport in PE, starting next week. More than 30 schools were visited by volunteer instructors in Portland last year.
Hall, now Director of Development for Rugby Oregon, a Portland not-for-profit, played in national 7- and 15-a-side teams between 2007 and 2011. He was in the final US squad for the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, contested by teams from 20 countries, but was sidelined through injury.
In February 2013 Hall turned out for an invitational team at a Las Vegas event that coincided with the US leg of the International Rugby Board’s Sevens World Series. The Sevens World Series is played by 15 national teams in 9 tournaments across the world.
Hall’s visit is organized by Schools Sevens Rugby in Lane County, a group formed by local parents to promote the sport.