UOW Crusaders Elite
Residential Program

The first of its kind

The UOW Crusaders Elite Residential Program is a unique opportunity to develop your rugby skills with training provided by fully qualified coaches from the Crusaders International Academy.

The next edition of the Elite Residential Program will be held from Sunday 3 July to Wednesday 6 July 2022.

The program is open to senior school students in years 9, 10, 11 and 12 who are looking for an intensive rugby training program which covers more than just the on-field components of the game. 

The first of its kind in Australia, the program brings together one of the world's best-known football clubs and one of the world's best modern universities.

Program details

Elite Residential Program

Program dates 3 July - 6 July 2022
Final payment date 28 June 2022
Final registration date 30 June 2022

*Any registration made on the final registration date will require full payment at the time of registration. 


All Sessions (including compulsory evening sessions)
Giveaway items (TBC)
Individual technical report
Meals provided (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Photo files from the program
On-site accommodation



An initial payment of 50% at the time of registering, with the full payment required 5 days prior to the commencement of the program.


  • The program is open to male and female rugby players in years 9, 10, 11 and 12 who are looking for an intensive rugby training program which covers more than just the on-field components of the game. 
  • You will be asked to provide a summary of your rugby playing experience to date as part of your online registration. 
 Day 1Day 2Day 3Day 4

Welcome, introduction to the program

Check into accommodation

Field session & pool recovery

Field session & recovery Field session & pool recovery


Field session & recovery

Gym introduction

UOW presentation & campus tour

Cooking & nutrition workshop


Lunch & wrap-up 



Ice breaker / team building Ice breaker / team building Game analysis session N/A

*Schedule is subject to change.

Residential participants in the program will be staying at Kooloobong Village, located on the UOW campus. The accommodation is conveniently located within walking distance to the training fields and all other facilities that we will use during the week.

Accommodation will include one bedroom in a four bedroom unit with shared amenities between the four occupants. Room allocations will be divided by gender, with boys and girls being allocated separate floors within the residential block.

24 hour supervision will be provided by UOW staff with appropriate child protection certificates and first aid qualifications.

Participants choosing our residential option will need to be fully vaccinated with their first and second doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine. We will ask you to provide proof of this upon taking your registration. If you are not vaccinated, you are still able to take up our non-residential option


Participants will receive:

  • A unique opportunity to train in a professional environment which is normally only experienced by professional and national team rugby players.
  • On-field coaching from Crusader International Academy coaches who have spent time learing with the Crusaders & Crusaders Academy in Christchurch. 
  • Insurance under the University of Wollongong's wider sports participation policy.
  • UOW Crusaders Elite Residential Program branded gear.
  • Off-field sessions to assist your development including:
    • Video analysis sessions
    • Basic nutrition and cooking education
    • Gym introduction
    • Pool recovery sessions

Frequently asked questions

Q: What level of rugby ability or experience do I need to join the Program?

A: We do not have a set level of ability or experience for participation in the ERP. We expect the level of participants to be of a standard equivalent your schools First to Third XV’s. If you have not played at any of these levels, this does not exclude you from joining the ERP, you will only improve by training with and against better players!

Q: Why should I choose this program over others that are out there?

A: Our ERP is unique in that we are the only offering where we have coaches who have coached and learnt the ‘Crusader Way'. Our coaches have coached with the Crusaders and Canterbury teams for a number of years and worked with players at the highest levels of rugby development. Our off-field staff are also some of the best in the industry who will use their knowledge and experience to deliver the highest quality program in the market.

Q: What will I get out of this program?

A: The ERP is an abbreviated version of the UOW Crusaders Global Rugby Program which is a program available to UOW students. That program runs across the academic year, for 36 weeks. All aspects of that program have been replicated into the five days of the ERP which will give you a better understanding of the tactical and technical areas of the game, basic nutrition and cooking information, recovery education and strategies, gym introduction, physical testing and an introduction to UOW from an academic perspective.

Q: Why the Crusaders?

A: Crusaders Rugby are the best Super Rugby team in history, so it will be exciting to have them at UOW coaching UOW students passionate about rugby. Crusaders are world-renowned for their coaching success and have a long history in player and coach development with their Crusaders Academy in both Christchurch and Nelson sires. The academy allows the Crusaders to mould potential recruits into the best professional players they can be. The club’s proven record at producing exceptional talent speaks for itself: In each of the last three World Cup cycles, the Crusaders have produced more All Blacks than any of the other New Zealand Super Rugby sides.

Q: Do I need to stay on campus for the program?

A: You are not required to reside on campus for the program, but to get the full experience it is recommended. You will be in attendance at all sessions, some of these are in the evening and will finish at approximately 8.30pm – 9.00pm. If you live locally, staying at home is an option but attendance at all sessions is advised.

Q: If COVID Restrictions are still in place in NSW, what will happen to the program?

A: UOW will follow any and all guidelines from NSW Health at the time of the program and will monitor the situation in the weeks prior to commencement. If the program is not able to be run in April, we will look to postpone to later in the year with the exact dates TBC. If a postponement is necessary, we will offer you the choice of a full refund, or we can hold your place for the next edition of the program.

Q: If I am staying on the UOW campus, who will be responsible for my safety and wellbeing for the duration of the program?

A: UOW will have a dedicated staff member to ensure your time on campus is safe and enjoyable. Throughout the day there will be a Program Leader who will ensure all participants safety and overnight there will be a dedicated male and female staff member who will stay on site to assist with any issues. There will also be a staff member on the front desk of the accommodation block at all times for any accommodation issues. All staff have the required Working With Children Checks and First Aid qualifications.


Student throwing a rugby
Man catching football
All Blacks great Reuben Thorne leads a training session with young rugby players at UOW.
I am excited to welcome players to UOW to experience a week in the life of a Crusaders Player. This residential program is a unique opportunity to get first hand experience of the 'Crusader Way' and improve your game. Joining our family for the week will give players an understanding of what it takes to get to the next level. Andy Gibson Crusaders Coach