Medical Advice for Tag Players

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ITRA Players and Referees at the launch of ExpressCare Sponsorship of ITRA Leagues in Cork & Naas

ExpressCare Minor Injury and Illnesses Walk-In Clinics, located in Tallaght, Northwood, Naas & Cork, are the sponsors of ITRA leagues in Cork and Naas - click here for Press Release 2020. As part of their interest in the health and safety of ITRA players, ExpressCare have helped us create this Medical Advice page with lots of information on what to do if you are unfortuante enough to pick up an injury when playing Tag Rugby...and we all know that accidents do happen on the Tag pitch!

  1. Services Available
  2. Videos - Advice on how to Treat Common Tag Rugby Injuries
  3. Concussion
  4. Tips from ex-Munster & Ireland Player, David Corkery

Open to everyone from 10am to 10pm, 365 days a year, the clinics offer an quick and hassle-free alternative to busy A&E departments. 

Promising fast turnaround times of approx. 1 hour with no appointment or referral needed, ExpressCare's Emergency Department-trained doctors and nurses will attend to all minor injuries, such as fractures, sprains and cuts requiring stitches.  

The clinics operate independently, providing a range of services to all patients whether:

  • you pay on the day for a specific service; or,
  • if you have private health insurance with Laya Healthcare or Irish Life Health, ExpressCare is a covered benefit.

You can also get a €50 discount if you present with a GP referral letter.

Have a look through the leaflet below and find out more about the services available in the 4 x ExpressCare Clinics around the country because you never know when you, or one of your friends or family, may need to drop in! For more details, visit the ExpressCare website or follow @AffideaIreland on Twitter and Facebook.


Dr. Tony Lynch, who is Clinical Lead at the ExpressCare clinic in Cork, gives advice in each of videos below about how to treat the most common injuries he sees in the Clinic from sport, including Tag Rugby.
    Ankle Injury     








Foot Pain




Hand Injury




Head Injury




Knee Injury




Pulled Muscle





Clinical Lead of the ExpressCare clinic in Cork, Dr. Tony Lynch, has put together the information leaflet (below) detailing the simple rules to be followed immediately after a suspected head injury when playing Tag Rugby.





Personally, I like to improve in all I do, so I have thrown together a few tips that will make your participation in the sport a lot more pleasurable and help you hopefully become a better player!


A. Enjoyment: Whilst there is also a serious side to playing Tag Rugby, the vast majority of people are playing to enjoy themselves, stay fit and meet new friends. Tag Rugby is a sport that everyone can play with zero need to have played the contact version beforehand. The most important component of Tag Rugby is that you enjoy yourself and do so in a safe and well-mannered fashion.

B. Speed: The faster the ball carrier is moving, the harder the tags are to grab. Once you experience this, you will happily run faster and attack the spaces the defenders leave vacant. So, the importance of working on your speed is vital. Simple straight-line running drills are very useful - however, having the ability to change from a jogging action into a full sprint is what Tag Rugby is all about so you will need to alter your training speeds, in order to train your body to deal with slowing down and speeding up.  
3. Passing: Most people will find passing off one side a lot easier than the other...however, it is vital that Tag Rugby players learn how to pass off both sides. And don't despair because learning to pass off your weaker side is not as difficult as you might think! There are a whole host of passing drills that you can find on the internet but unless you practice them, you will never master it. Try not to get into bad passing habits because, if you do, it will be much harder to fix at a later stage. And always try to work with someone when practicing passing because hitting a moving target is much harder than a stationary one.    
4. Agility: Tag Rugby is excellent at developing agility. The footwork you use to avoid being “tagged” develops the more you play but practicing side-stepping and swerving are definitely elements that you should incorporate into training and warm-ups. Mastering these skills will allow you to evade defenders and score tries. Again, there are lots of online drills you will find - but it is imperative you warm up well before commencing. Sudden changes of direction and speed will put considerable strain on your ligaments and muscles so unless you warm up adequately, you will get injured!
5. Defending: The tags themselves are notoriously difficult to grab hold of because they flap about. As a defender, you should get as close as you can to the ball carrier, using good footwork skills and then bend low to reach the tag. The game will improve your basic understanding of defensive organisation - however, your ability to holler and help your teammates get into position will play a big part in determining whether your defence is strong or weak. Defence isn’t about how fast you can run or strong you are, it’s about communicating, understanding lines of running, where gaps might appear and determining who on the opposing team is a dangerous ball carrier.
Hopefully, these few tips will help you - however, the most important thing about playing Tag Rugby or any other amateur team sport is to enjoy yourself and truly appreciate just how important you are to the team. Remember that, without you, there is no team and the friends you make on - and off! - the field are friends that no money can buy.
Regards and safe tagging to one and all!
David Corkery

ExpressCare Business Development Manager, and ex-Ireland  rugby international, David Corkery with Aidan Walsh from ITRA
at launch of ExpressCare sponsorship of ITRA's year round leagues in Cork and Naas