Variables and what sport teaches you…….

Try Celebrations for Jack Singleton of Gloucester Rugby

Try Celebrations for Jack Singleton of Gloucester Rugby during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby match between Gloucester Rugby and Exeter Chiefs at Kingsholm Stadium - but Chiefs ran out winners. - Credit: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK

Again a weekend of cracking rugby, its been an ominous few weeks in the Premiership, but Chiefs coming away from Kingsholm with a win is big and hopefully will kick them on to better performances.

The Sidmouth 1st XV had a week with no game but the 2nd XV put together a strong performance at the Blackmore against the Tiverton Quins, plenty of positives from young and old who had the chance to run out. Very important at this point as we lead back into the league fixtures this week after a tough loss at home versus St Austell we’ll be looking to put in an improved performance.

As a squad it is important that we learn to deal with the disappointments and move forward while learning. No better opportunity to learn when you lose.

A week with no game meant there was an opportunity for those not playing Saturday to head out to Sandford Orchard for a few pre match drinks and the ability to let their hair down, those who have some. I must say from a slightly bias point of view that the Cider Works out at Crediton provided fantastic pizza and better cider. Apart from Rib Tickler, many took a liking to ‘The General’, a strong cider and a real tester.

As I have mentioned before, a great chance to bond and socialise over a drink or two sharing rugby stories and experiences.

It got me thinking of what sport has taught me and how I use it now. Sport is full of variables, so many, that if you are not careful they can overwhelm an individual. Dealing with the variables of training and performing as always improves performance but upon reflection has really given me confidence to carry forward in life.

That’s why one of the best bits of advice I have been given is to work hard at keeping it simple, it is something I like to talk when coaching and as a player found worked for me from day to day and during the most fiercest competition.

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I tend to look back at what I’ve learnt to use in the future, my physical well being, training and nutrition has been a gradual path, learning what I can and can't do (meaning I generally can't treat myself if I want to stay healthy). But more importantly the physical nature of the game is quick to humble most individuals, which in turn I believe can lead to great mental well being shifts. Having the ability to problem solve and motivate yourself in adversity is something that I will always carry through from a career in team sport.

One thing for sure is you quickly feel like these attributes leave you, even in the short term over an off-season or having been away from full rugby for nearly a year, it feels like I’ve almost forgot how to fall over or get smashed gracefully. The intricacies of falling well seem to have evaded my brain.

One thing for sure is after all these years and all that learning I am still yet to work out how not to be a lightweight when it comes to alcohol.

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