There has never been a more exciting time for rugby in this country. No longer a raucous minority, rugby is a rising force of power, grit, determination and triumph. Our men and women compete fiercely on the international stage. Our Women’s Sevens brought home silver from the 2013 IRB World Cup in Moscow. Our Men finished a record- setting 9th, and Canadian Nathan Hirayama took the prize for top scorer tournament wide.
Canada’s rugby players are taking hard-won victories around the world.
How far will they go? To London, to Rio, to their place in Canadian sport history.
How will they get there? With truly world-class high performance training facilities, built by the rugby community. With financial support for our athletes so they can focus on achieving their bold ambitions. With more than just your cheers.
GET OFF THE SIDELINES. GET ON THE PITCH.
RUGBY IS RISING
"This is what athletes dream about. To be able to dedicate our daily lives to every aspect of the sport, from nutrition to therapy to coaching and strategy sessions. THIS is where excellence lives."
SEAN DUKE, Canada's Top Try Scorer in the 2014-2015 HSBC Sevens World Series.
Women's Sevens did not exist in 1992.
In 2013-13, our women played more than 45 games in locations like Las Vegas, Dubai, Hong Kong, Amsterdam, China and Russia.
The number of high schools fielding rugby teams in Canada has more than doubled in the last ten years.
Rugby is one of the fastest growing sports for high school girls
“TSN is proud to be the Official Broadcaster of Rugby Canada. Rugby is growing in Canada as evidenced by the strong TV numbers and the feedback we get from our viewers. We are very excited about the ability of our Men’s and Women’s national teams to capture the hearts of a nation and are very much looking forward to the 2015 World Cup.”
SHAWN REDMOND, VP Programming at TSN
"CANADA'S RUGBY REVIVAL"
The Globe and Mail, June 14, 2013
It’s never been more important to show our pride in Canadian rugby.
To help our Canadian athletes reach for medal-winning performances that will catapult us onto the world stage.
Get behind our athletes.
2013 Rugby Canada Women's Sevens Player of the Year, Jen Kish is known for her unique, passionate style and she helped Canada finish second at the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens in Moscow
In 2010, Rugby Canada’s High Performance Program made the strategic decision to centralize, focusing all the financial, human and capital resources into one training environment for both men and women. Keeping athletes together is critical to long-term success and a strong culture of performance.
One of the only places in Canada where rugby can be played year-round, Langford, British Columbia has become the home of elite rugby in this country. The city has supported the rugby community generously over the last three years, providing land, funding, and a supportive fan base for our athletes.
"Canada’s performance on the world stage is a direct result of the investment Canadians make in their athletes. The Centre of Excellence facilitates
the daily coaching, sports medicine, strength training and conditioning our athletes need to perform at their peak. They’ll return that investment if we give them the chance."
MIKE CHU, General Manager, Operations and Performance, Rugby Canada
"Rugby cannot move forward as an international sport in Canada without an investment in high performance training. A centralized, world-class facility is the only ticket to competition on the international stage for both the men’s and women’s teams. Our athletes deserve our support."
BRIAN BURKE, President, Hockey Operations, Calgary Flames. Board Member, Rugby Canada
While our athletes now have the benefit of training together, their facilities are not yet up to the standards needed for optimum performance.
Due to limited space, men and women cannot train at the same time, resulting in missed opportunities for learning and training efficiencies. Training days are regularly interrupted by travel to secondary facilities. A lack of proper medical, therapeutic and dining facilities disjoints crucial components of the training cycle.
For today’s elite athlete, training is a full-time job. Our players are bigger and stronger than ever, driven by the demands of a faster game, larger players and a more competitive international environment. The 24-hour commitment they make to Canadian rugby encompasses nutrition, exercise, rest, therapy, and analysis – all carefully monitored so they can become the very best athletes Canada has to offer the world.
In the summer of 2013, the City of Langford generously committed further funding in land and development fees to create a new home base for our athletes.
This state-of-the-art high performance training facility will finally meet the on and off field requirements of our athletes. And we, the rugby community, are rallying behind them, pulling together to fund the Centre’s construction and operational costs.
On a typical day, athletes will be able to prepare and eat gold medal meals in the kitchen/dining area, train in the gym, and undertake technical and tactical sessions on the turf fields, just steps away from the Centre of Excellence.
With this facility, our Canadian men and women will increase the number of days they train together, maximize contact time between and among coaches, players and personnel, and further their pursuit of excellence in each and every competition. The facilities will also be made available for use by other elite level athletes from within the local region as well as age grade athletes and teams from across Canada.
“The Rugby Canada High Performance Centre is an integral piece in our plans to provide a world-leading environment for our players. The standard of preparation and player welfare provided to players in international sport directly impacts results, and this facility will greatly enhance our ability to succeed on the world stage.”
– Jim Dixon, General Manager
“To actually have access to facilities when we want and need them – to me it just seems like we’ll really have a fighting chance to win a gold medal. I can’t wait to get there.”
JOHN MOONLIGHT, Captain Men’s Sevens
For Canadian rugby to truly rise on the world stage, our elite athletes need more than a new building. Many of our athletes have a hard time meeting the financial requirements of getting to – and staying in – Langford. While the Sport Canada Athlete Assistance Program provides funding to our carded players, many others are left to fend for themselves. To perform at their peak, these athletes need to be able to focus on daily training, not meeting a basic standard of living through part-time work and individual fundraising.
In addition to supporting our high performance training facilities, the REACH CAMPAIGN also seeks funding for The National Player Support Program. We are seeking to create a fund of $300,000 each year which will be used for our athletes to give them the best access possible to what they need to compete. This fund will help support access to competitions and facilitate training environments, to support new technologies such as GPS trackers and cryochambers, for relocation costs, and other fees that burden the athlete. This is a pool of protected funds that go directly to our athletes both in Langford and across Canada, keeping them engaged in our sport and performing at their best.
With your support, we can ensure EVERY athlete has the financial assistance needed to more clearly focus on their goal of achieving world class performance.
“To know that so many Canadians have supported our growth and development as ambassadors for the country, and the sport – that’s what makes us work hard each and every day.”
ASHLEY STEACY, 2013 IRB Women’s Sevens World Cup team
In a decade, those who love rugby will look back on this time and see it as a turning point for the sport in Canada.
A culture of excellence leads to better performance on the world stage. Success breeds attention. Rugby will grow its fan base, garner media attention, and inspire young athletes to take up the sport.
It is time to take pride in Canadian rugby, to invest in the dream of medal-winning performances, and to envision our game being played in every school and community across Canada.
L to R: Graham Brown, CEO of Rugby Canada, Mike Chu, GM of Rugby Operations and Performance for Rugby Canada, The Honourable Stewart Young, Mayor of the City of Langford, and John Jeffrey, IRB High Performance Committee, Scotland, officially break ground
“Our community, our residents and our council are all behind rugby. It’s becoming such a great sport here for our community in entertainment value, and of course in opportunities for youth involvement.”
THE HONOURABLE STEWART YOUNG, Mayor, City of Langford
“This dream doesn’t just belong to the athletes. It belongs to Canada.”
TYLER ARDRON, Captain, 2015 IRB Rugby World Cup Team, 20 Caps for Canada’s Men’s Fifteens Team, Former Member of Canada’s Men’s Sevens Team, Currently plays for the Ospreys in Wales