Withycombe ladies RFC: "Come and join us"

PUBLISHED: 19:05 09 October 2019 | UPDATED: 19:05 09 October 2019

The poster that advertises Withycombe ladies rugby. Picture ARCHANT

The poster that advertises Withycombe ladies rugby. Picture ARCHANT

Archant

Ladies, have you ever wanted to play sport, but not had the time? Perhaps you have had concerns over fitness, maybe you worry about juggling family commitments or possibly you feel your body type and size is not conducive to getting involved, writes Amy Horler.

If any, or indeed, all, of the above apply to you then rugby is definitely the sport

for you!

Women's rugby is one of the fastest growing sports with global numbers of participating players doubling between 2014 and 2018. Withycombe ladies RFC are part of this trend and are beginning their fifth season since forming in the summer of 2015.

Over the past four years women from the age of 17 right up to 60 have donned the green and black colours of the club and enjoyed being involved in the sport.

The current squad epitomises the variety of characters that they see: students at sixth form college, energetic twenty-somethings and full-time working Mums, who are more accustomed to hot flushes than hot dates! Ten of the squad are mothers with children from the ages of one month to 18 years!

Those children who are old enough sometimes play too, but otherwise childcare is shared between family, friends and the huge support of the rugby network. It truly is a rugby family. Bridget Culver was Withy Ladies first ever captain and describes how the camaraderie is second to none, saying: "I'd played various team sports for clubs for over 30years. It was always friendly, but the bond that you have through rugby surpasses all others - it is no exaggeration to say it's a family. My first training session was nerve-wracking. I knew one person there, felt old, wasn't fit, but by the end we were all fist-bumping and arranging where to meet for a pint (or a coffee)!"

Withy ladies team co-captain, Carol Glover, explains the ethos of the ladies rugby team saying: "It is about everyone giving their best for the team and having a good time doing it. People have so much going on in their lives and here we have the opportunity to put that aside and have some time for ourselves. Everyone understands the pressures that people have, but rugby helps to share the load whilst also relieving some pent-up aggression!"

The physicality of the game is a worry for some. Will it hurt? The simple answer is that it can do, but not as much as you think it will. When you nail someone with the right tackle technique it doesn't hurt at all and the buzz is amazing. Am I the right body shape? Well, have you ever watched a game of rugby? Short, tall; skinny, curvy: muscles, bones: fast, steady paced… all shapes and sizes, anything goes!

If you like your cakes or prefer a stick of celery, it really doesn't matter.

This year's co-captain, Molly Tregedeon explains the opportunities available in joining the Exmouth based club.

"We are a new club compared to many in the area, but our set-up is perfect for those in

and around Exmouth. We have close ties to the junior section and several of the girls have come up through the ranks. Being able to play here means that they don't have to leave their friends to travel to Topsham or Exeter. We have been able to be a platform for players moving on in their careers. Several have started here and then been given opportunities to progress at clubs who play at a higher level. Whilst this is where we aspire to be we know it will take time, therefore for the time being we love seeing players develop. We are a great stepping stone and they never forget their Withy roots."

There are members who have played for years and others who 'fancied rolling in some mud and have watched a game in the pub' and there are those who run 5k for fun and those who need a rest after running 50 metres!

Training takes place every week come rain or shine and matches tend to be on a Sunday,

although not every week.

So, if you have ever wondered if you've got what it takes, maybe now is the time for you to try women's rugby? Remember, you have nothing to lo see and a whole new family' to gain!

Withy ladies train each Wednesday evening at the club's Raleigh Park home from 7pm.

If you're interested in joining us contact Amy Horler 075425 48699.

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