Coventry Rugby is investing in the future of its players by engaging the services of athlete transition experts Switch the Play (StP) to deliver practical training planning for life outside of sport.
Former professional rugby players and Leicester Tigers’ team mates Leon Lloyd (now CEO of StP) and James Grindal (now principal of Grindal Wealth Management, a partner practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management), taught players how to overcome the challenges of transition, the importance of putting a plan in place and gave examples of how other athletes achieved success.
Rowland Winter, director of rugby at Coventry said: “The advice and guidance from Switch the Play is invaluable to our playing squad. As a club it helps us to be proactive in our commitment to support our players’ personal development. The masterclass was a real success and acted as a catalyst for players to act immediately and start to plan their transition beyond rugby.”
Both Leon and James have experienced transition out of professional rugby. Leon explained: “Many players have to completely change their careers when they finish playing professional rugby and if there has been no prior planning or consideration it can be a hugely daunting time.
“As a professional rugby player, I lost my job suddenly through injury and found myself forced into a situation I didn’t want to be in.
“To survive, I had to learn a lot in a short space of time. I did this and today am enjoying a new career, but I would have done things very differently if I had been alerted earlier to the challenges I would face. In hindsight, there are many things I could have done earlier in my career to make the transition easier. This is why James and I want to teach other players how to plan for the future.”
James now runs his own wealth management business and has discovered that many skills honed as a professional rugby player have played an important role in his subsequent success outside of sport.
He said: “It is very beneficial for young players to learn from those who have gone before them. Turning my experience into practical lessons for others is hugely satisfying and hopefully beneficial for them too.”
Also supporting Leon and James with the presentation was Dan Leo, CEO of Pacific Rugby Players Welfare, an independent, not-for-profit organisation that supports professional and semi-professional players of Pacific Island heritage in the UK and Europe.
Dan is currently training to become a StP associate and was able to share his own advice about preparing for life outside of sport.
The next session is planned for February 28 where the team will undertake a ‘Brand of You’ masterclass which explores personal branding and what it means to them on and off the pitch.
For more information about Switch the Play masterclasses, please email email@example.com.