Codes, Rules and Accreditations
National Code of Conduct
The Rugby League Code of Conduct provides all participants – players, parents, coaches, referees, spectators and officials – with some simple rules that assist in delivering a safe and positive environment for everyone involved in the game.
Within that safe environment, every Rugby League participant has the best chance to enjoy the game. By accepting the standards of behaviour in the Code, we provide opportunities for young boys and girls to grow on the field – we build good players, good citizens and good communities in which Rugby League is a social asset.
We strongly recommend that everyone connected with Rugby League adopts these rules as an essential part of the way they contribute to our great game.
Code of Conduct – Player:
Be a good sport. Respect all good play whether from your team or the opposition and shake hands with, and thank, the opposition players and officials after the game – win, lose or draw.
Participate for your own enjoyment and benefit.
Always respect the referee’s decision.
Never become involved in acts of foul play.
Honour both the spirit and letter of the competition rules and live up to the highest ideals of ethics and sportsmanship; avoid gamesmanship and respect the traditions of the game.
Never engage in disrespectful conduct of any sort including profanity, sledging, obscene gestures, offensive remarks, trash-talking, taunting or other actions that are demeaning to other players, officials or supporters.
Care for and respect the facilities and equipment made available to you during training and competition.
Safeguard our health; don’t use any illegal or unhealthy substances.
Recognise that many officials, coaches and referees are volunteers who give up their time to provide their services. Treat them with the utmost respect.
Do not bet or otherwise financially speculate, directly or indirectly, on the outcome or any other aspect of a Rugby League match or competition in which you are involved.
Code of Conduct – Coach:
Actively discourage foul play and/or unsportsmanlike behaviour by players.
Seek to maximise the participation and enjoyment of all players regardless of ability; avoid the tendency to over-use a talented player; treat all players as equals, regardless of their talent.
Show concern and caution towards all sick and injured players. Follow the advice of a physician and/ or sports trainer to the letter when determining when an injured player is ready to commence training or playing.
Teach players that an honest effort and competing to the best of their ability is as important as victory.
Maintain appropriate, professional relationships with players at all times.
Maintain a thorough knowledge of the Laws of the Game and keep abreast of current coaching methods; maintain or improve your current accreditation level.
Always consider the health, safety and welfare of the players at all times.
Teach young players to realise that there is a big gap between their play and the professional game; do not coach them as if they are professionals.
Ensure that your coaching reflects the level of the competition being played; do not be a ‘win-at-all-cost’ coach.
Conduct yourself at all times and situations in a manner that shows leadership, respect for the game of Rugby League and respect for all those that are involved in the game.
National Safe Play Code
The Safe Play Code was developed to emphasise safety and good conduct within the game of Rugby League by creating the best possible on-field environment and actively controlling undesirable actions. It applies to all players up to and including the Under 15 years age group.
Mini, Mod & International Rules
After more than 5 years of research, the rules governing the game in the Mini & Mod age groups (5-12yo) were adjusted for the start of the 2015 season. The introduction of these rule changes has had a positive impact on the Rugby League experience for kids competing in these age groups and are designed to create a more inclusive and enjoyable environment. The rules governing the game in the Mini & Mod age groups can be accessed through the following link:
What is the Rugby League National Coaching Accreditation Scheme?
The National Coaching Accreditation Scheme is endorsed by the Australian Sports Commission and aims to ensure that all Rugby League coaches receive both essential and beneficial educational opportunities.
Why do I need an accreditation to coach a Rugby League team?
Coaching Accreditation is compulsory for all Rugby League coaches in Australia, regardless of what age or level you are coaching at. It is essential that new coaches gain a basic understanding of how to coach, different stages of learning and development, safety considerations, as well as the core skills, tactics and laws of the game prior to taking on the role of a coach.
Who needs a Coaching Accreditation?
Regardless of what age or level you intend on coaching, you will be required to gain a Coaching Accreditation as per National Rugby League (NRL) policy.
The following coach education courses must be completed under NRL policy:
- Modified Games Coaching Course (6-12 Years)
- International Games Coaching Course (13+ Years)
- Senior Club Coaching Course (18+ Years)
If you are coaching a senior team (18+) and are the head coach, coaching coordinator or top level (senior) coach with 2 or more senior grades, we would advise you to complete the Senior Club Coaching Course.
How long does my accreditation last for?
Your Accreditation has an expiry date – of four years from its date of issue. At that time, you must update your accreditation in order to continue coaching. Of course, if you should upgrade your accreditation to a higher level at any time during those four years, then the expiry date re-commences from the date of issue of the updated accreditation.
The expiry date is clearly shown on the accreditation certificate issued to all coaches upon accreditation.
For further information on coach accreditation requirements please visit