FAQs About Phoenix

Updated Sunday February 12, 2017 by James Cooper.

Parents often have questions about the sport of rugby and local programs.  Here are the answers to many of the questions we field from new families:

Q: How do I register and pay?

A: On the homepage click on the header “Click Here to Register Online”. All the information you will need is there to register.  Payment must be made by a Mastercard or Visa credit/debit card.  You will also need to register directly with USA Rugby as a player prior to registering with Phoenix Rugby.


Q: What does my registration fee cover?

A: Your registration fee covers club dues and miscellaneous items such as tournament fees, transportation, referee fees, equipment and other related items of expense. There are additional fees for players that require transportation and hotel lodging for travel expenses for any overnight tournaments.


Q: How do I buy my son’s uniform?

A: Rugby jerseys are provided but retained by the club. You will need to buy rugby shorts(black), socks (black), mouth guard, soccer cleats & a practice jersey.  We are currently in the process of updating apparel information with local and online vendors.  Currently, you may order online from http://www.worldrugbyshop.com/


Q: What kind of shoes does he need?

A: Molded soccer cleats will work just fine to get started.


Q: Can I buy other spirit wear?

A: Yes.  We are in the process of updating our apparel but currently http://www.worldrugbyshop.com/ has Phoenix rugby apparel. 


Q: What time and where is practice?

A: Practices are usually held twice a week.  For 2017 Spring season, Phoenix Rugby will practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning at 8:00 p.m. at North Park on Cogburn Road in Alpharetta.


Q: Who are the coaches and what vetting process do they go through?

A: Our coaches are all experienced former players and coaches with international background and experience in the sport. All coaches undergo thorough background checks by USA Rugby. They also have to pass prescribed USA Rugby certification courses on safety, concussion, child abuse and rugby.


Q: I would like to get involved.  Are there volunteer opportunities?

A: Of course! Volunteers are welcomed and needed by every club at youth and senior levels --both on and off the field. Getting engaged in the sport of rugby as a volunteer is a very rewarding experience and a great way to support your athlete. Prior experience or knowledge of rugby is not necessary; there is a role for everyone. Coaches, officials, team parents, and medical personnel in particular are in great demand. For more information contact the club at InfoGeneral@phoenixrugby.org


Q: Do I have to commit to the whole season? The game schedule is not complete.  How does that work?

A: It is preferred that a player commits to the whole season in order to develop their skills/experience and contribute to the team.  However, there are multi-sport athletes who wish to play another sport, especially during fall months, and this can be managed by players, parents and coaches working together. The club is flexible on this matter but the club is careful to see that a player is not overscheduled.  We believe that academics should always come first in terms of priorities, and strongly support a student athlete philosophy.

As the season advances into the spring it is less ideal for a player to play another sport since this is when league and playoff matches are held. Again there is flexibility shown by the club but it has to be managed by player, coach and parents together. The game schedule is built up from August onwards as fixtures are added. Unlike other traditional American sports, rugby is in its infancy within the state of Georgia so scheduling can be fluid especially with booking fields, officials and sometimes opponents.  We work diligently to provide updated information as quickly as it is available with regards to scheduling.


Q: What league do we play in and who do we play against?

A: The high school Phoenix Academy will play in the Georgia league and against member clubs. Also there are many friendly matches scheduled with in-state and out-of-state teams. For the current year, Phoenix's varsity team also participates in a regional league Mid South Invitational Rugby League (MSIRL).  The middle school team will compete primarily locally but will have matches with out-of-state team as well.

Q: How are away games handled?

A: Transportation is provided for players for out-of-state matches at additional cost. Parents often elect to travel themselves to watch their son or sons play. Most trips are same day. Occasionally there may be overnight trips where accommodation expenses may be added. Within metro Atlanta, players usually provide their own transportation but the club will assist if required.


Q: What if my son can’t make it to practice or a game?

A: This happens on occasion. We ask that the parent of player notify the coaches with sufficient notice so that they can make adjustments, especially for games. We recognize that emergencies crop up from time to time.


Q: How will I know that practice is cancelled?

Players and parents are notified by email and through text. The website www.phoenixrugby.org will have an alert message on the home page directly below the picture slideshow and a message will be posted to the team's facebook page https://www.facebook.com/alpharettaphoenixrugby


Q: What should my son bring to practice?

A:  Athletes should wear rugby shorts, rugby socks, practice jersey, mouth guard and soccer cleats.  Of course, they will also need appropriate outer clothing in colder weather.  Each athlete should bring their own water/coolers for rehydrating as appropriate.


Q: Tell me about corporate sponsorship opportunities.

A: We welcome sponsorships and very much need them as we grow the program.   You or your company can contribute directly to Phoenix as a 501(3) c.  For additional information, please contact our President Niall Fenton at InfoGeneral@phoenixrugby.org to discuss opportunities. We can also offer advertising for our sponsors at matches.


Q: As a parent, I don’t know anything about rugby and my son has never played.  Will that be a problem? Where can I learn more?

A: Not at all! The vast majority of our new players have no prior experience playing rugby. The program is designed to teach young athletes the sport, develop skills and enable them to play competitive rugby at the middle school level, high school level, in college and beyond.   Additionally, after college there are hundreds if not thousands of clubs people can join here in the U.S. or around the globe and continue to play and enjoy the sport.  You can learn more at the following sites:  Also, please check out the information under All About Rugby.

USA Rugby

Rugby Union


Q: Are there rugby teams for girls?

A: Yes, there are rugby teams for girls. Thousands of girls around the U.S. play rugby at the high school level and most colleges offer rugby for women with clubs available post-college.  In fact, women’s teams will be playing in the 2016 Olympics.


Q: People say that rugby is a pretty rough sport.  Is that true?

A: Rugby is a contact sport but is not a dangerous sport. Players are coached and trained to play the sport with safety in mind.  In a recent study conducted by Ohio State University, rugby at the high school level is safer to play (results in less injuries for the athlete) than football or ice hockey.  You can read the report at USA Rugby.


Q: Is there liability and insurance involved?

A: It is recommended that each player is covered by their own medical insurance. USA Rugby provides both liability & medical insurance for registered players, coaches and clubs. The medical insurance may take the form of primary or secondary coverage. Details of the insurance program can be found on http://www.usarugby.org/.