Injury Management

Dealing with Injuries

The safety of all players is of paramount importance and therefore all clubs must ensure that, wherever the game is played or training conducted:

  1. There is appropriate first aid cover and equipment provided, determined by a risk assessment

  2. There is access to a telephone to ensure emergency services can be called

  3. There is clear vehicular access for an ambulance or other emergency vehicle

First Aid

Everyone involved in rugby has a role to play in making the game as enjoyable and safe as possible. Those who hold a coaching position or have a volunteer role providing pitch side care also have a specific responsibility to provide a safe and competent level of care to any injured player.

Responsibilities of First Aiders

  1. To provide first aid to players, as trained.

  2. To ensure that you know the position of the first aid box/bag.

  3. To ensure that the first aid kits and accident book are maintained.

  4. To ensure first aiders remain in date and attend regular workshops.

How to deal with a potentially serious injury while coaching or refereeing?

  1. Speak to the player  - without prompting any movement

  2. Call for help - first aider.

  3. Call for an ambulance - once assessed by first aider and/or:

    1. If you suspect a very serious injury

    2. If the player is not breathing

  4. Do not allow the player to move - they may have suffered a severe neck injury, and yet still be able to move. If the spine is unstable, and they are moved, they run the risk of permanent paralysis.

  5. Stay with the player and reassure them.

  6. Keep the player warm until professional help arrives.

Reporting & Managing Injuries

So that the RNRU can take an active role aiding in the care and rehabilitation of injured players, it is vital that the RNRU is notified of ALL injuries that are sustained whilst playing a match or undergoing organised training sessions.

ALL injuries sustained through playing or training rugby within the Royal Navy must submit an RNRU Injury Form. In the event of a player sustaining any of the following, an RFU Reportable Injury Form must be completed:

  1. Any injury which results in the player being admitted to a hospital (this does not include those that attend an Accident and Emergency Department and are allowed home from there).

  2. Deaths which occur during or within six hours of of a game finishing.

  3. Injuries in which artificial grass pitches or equipment such as sports goggles are involved.

Reportable Injury Events – Referee Reports

Following a reportable injury, the referee should also complete Referee Injury Event Form.
Referee Injury Report Form.


Clubs and organisers of rugby activities are responsible for providing an appropriate level of care to the players, members and spectators using their facilities. There is considerable variation in level of care that would be considered appropriate and this will depend on the individual circumstances at the club or venue. It will also depend on what is reasonably practicable for the club or organiser to provide. An individual risk based approach is therefore the most appropriate to take, in determining the requirement. Additional information and guidance can be obtained from the RNRU Office, HMS Temeraire.