Active Humber and the University of Hull have come together with notorious rivals Hull FC and Hull Kingston Rovers to increase participation in rugby league in Hull and East Riding.
Despite their differences, Hull’s two professional rugby league teams will work together to promote rugby league and encourage newcomers in Hull and East Riding.
Rugby league’s participation rates have steadily dropped over the last few years, with less and less young people having an interest in playing the sport. Despite schools and colleges upholding rugby league in physical education curriculums, the sport often fails to engage with females or those who are not typically ‘sporty’.
#UnitedbyRL plans to combat these issues with tailored sessions to target those who don’t usually get involved with the contact sport.
Female sessions for all ages will teach participants touch and tag rugby, making the sport accessible, inclusive and fun. Other sessions will be aimed at the social side of sport encouraging participants to get involved to meet new people or come along with current friends. The third strand of sessions will tap into the competitive side of rugby league, bringing participants into a tournament, providing club exit routes for those who might want to move onto the professional game.
FC coach Lee Radford spoke to Active Humber about the partnership and said: “it goes without saying, there’s a rivalry between the two clubs, but I think for the good of the game, getting kids involved and getting adults back involved in the game, you know we’re all united in rugby league”.
KR coach James Webster said: “the two professional clubs have a big reach, we can get to plenty of supporters and with Active Humber becoming part of it, they can give the technical side so we can reach as many as possible. The great part of rugby league is that it’s an inclusive sport; no matter your shape, your size or your sex; you can participate in rugby league”.
For more information, follow #UnitedbyRL on Twitter or contact Georgie Reid – Active Humber PR Officer on firstname.lastname@example.org.