What is Mini Rugby 

How do you play it and who can play?

The Game

Mini Ruby is a small sided game based on the full 15 a side game we see on TV. In the Mini game the rules have been designed to make the game safer and to encourage the development of skills. The rules of the game change as players get older, gradually preparing young players so that when they reach secondary school they are ready to play the full 15 a side game. 

Mini Rugby is fast, rough, muddy and enormously good fun to play. It’s a real team game where new players are quickly incorporated according to their abilities and where fun is more important than winning. 

Many people watching Rugby on TV find its tactics and rules complicated and difficult to understand. Mini Rugby is a much simpler, safer and shorter game. As players develop over the years more components are added to this basic game. No kicking or scrummaging is allowed until P6 when modified versions are introduced. 

Teamwork is an integral part of Rugby and understanding its laws and tactics is a big part of the game. This for some children adds to the challenge and interest of the sport. Rugby is not just a physical sport, thinking is as much a part of the game as running. 

For more information about the game visit the following SRU pages:

The Main SRU site

BBC Sport Rugby Link


Mini rugby teams are selected by age with a child’s primary class number deciding what team they play for. As example a child in primary six at school will probably play for the P6 team. 

Children under P3 have their own training which emphasises fun and fitness as much as Rugby. 

From P4-P7 each year group trains separately, with their own coaches and equipment.

Who can play rugby?

Many people believe all Rugby player are huge men, which is in fact is not the case. Mini Rugby has a place for every type of child, be they tall or short, skinny or solid, boy or girl. Whatever your build there is a position in rugby just for you. By the nature of the game Rugby asks players to take on specialist roles within the team, particularly in later years. Certain body shapes are particularly suited to particular positions. For example, forwards tend to be solid and strong. Backs on the other hand are generally agile and fast. Scrumhalves are often small and wiry. 

In short, Rugby has a position just for you no matter what size and shape you are, heavy or light, tall or short, girl or boy we want you all.

Can girls play?

They most certainly can! Girls and boys play Mini Rugby as equals in mixed teams. Girls are given no special treatment. Nor at this age do they need it. The physical differences between the sexes is irrelevant at Mini Rugby ages and girls have proved that they are valuable members of the team and are well able to compete with boys on equal terms. While a game of Rugby may not be every girls idea of fun some love it. We have several girls who play for us, with most squads having at least one girl on their team. We also regularly play teams with one or more girl in them. Whether playing for or against Dalziel girls are respected and valued in Mini Rugby by both coaches and players. 

Mini Rugby players do not usually change at the club but are brought “Pre-stripped” by parent. There are separate Male and Female toilet facilities at Dalziel Park.

Clothing & Equipment

P4-P7 must wear a gum shield or they will not be able to participate in training or games. Although P1-P3 is non-contact we would encourage players to wear a gum shield. This gets them used to wearing one at an early age and protects adult teeth which many children already have at this age.


While scrum caps do not reduce the risk of concussion they do help prevent cuts and abrasions and we would encourage players to wear them. 

Football or rugby boots are acceptable but please ensure studs are checked regularly for sharp edges.  Players should also bring trainers or astros as on occasion we may train on the 3G pitches. Blades are not recommended for use on 3G surfaces. 

The Dalziel Dragons top is available from our kit supplier GPE Team Sports . Black shorts and royal blue socks are available from most sports retailers.

Please ensure your child is wearing weather appropriate clothing. Children feel the effects of heat and cold far quicker than adults and we recommend players wear layers which can be removed if necessary. Lightweight wind/waterproof jackets, hats and gloves should be brought along just in case. 

Discipline and respect

Self-discipline, respect for other players, officials and coaches is expected from everyone while thuggery,verbal outbursts and foul play is not tolerated. Players, parents and coaches are expected to be good sports with opposition players, parents and officials and adults must always remember that the example they set will be observed by the squads. 

Dalziel Dragons Ethos

The Rugby ethos requires players to give three cheers to their opponents and shake hands at the end of every game. At Dalziel Dragons we view rugby as a sporting contest not a battle. Taking part, developing skills, getting fit, making friends, working with a team and having fun is what’s important to us. 

While its nice to win it’s not the most important thing in Mini Rugby. 

Fitness Level

Fitness is a very important aspect of today’s game no matter what level you play at. Dalziel Dragons want to have fit girls and boys playing for us and improving fitness is a big part of training every week. By the end of the season regular trainers are able to play in tournaments, which usually involves playing 3 to 6 matches in an afternoon.

We realise however at Dalziel Dragons that when children join us they may be anywhere within a range of fitness levels and that it may take time to get them “Match Fit”. If a player is willing to work with us we’ll do everything we can to bring their fitness up to a level that they are happy with.


Before your child`s match / training session -
  • Help your child to get their kit ready - it is their responsibility, not yours, but they need to learn how to do this.
  • Help your child to fuel correctly - a balanced diet is as important to their health as it is to a successful training session
  • Ask your child if they have packed their water bottle - the best way to get players drinking enough is to have a drink available to them at all times. Educate your child to take responsibility for this important piece of kit!
  • Help your child to get enough rest
  • Help your child go to play and practice in a positive frame of mind. (This includes things such as educating them to clean their boots and their gumshield after games and training sessions)