What is the Thunder Experience?

We recently wrapped up our inaugural season and it was a great experience, both for coaches and organizers and from the feedback so far, also for the parents and players. Here is a photo-summary of our four day camp/tournament under the heading, “What  is the Thunder Experience”.

 What is the Thunder Experience?

1. Thunder is about following traditions that respect not only your teammates but your opponents

It’s tradition in rugby to shake your opponents hand after a game win or lose. At the senior level you’ll often meet in the clubhouse after the game to share stories and refreshments.


 2. Thunder is about community and family, the Aboriginal community, the Rugby community

We probably had the largest contingent of family and friends camped out on the sideline, Thunder Nation.


 3. Thunder is about learning to deal with difficult situations

In rugby as in life, sometimes the odds are momentarily stacked against you. You have to make the best decision with the options you have.


 4. Thunder is about learning to work as a team

Rugby creates strong bonds as you can’t win without your teammates, you rely on  them for success  and safety.


5. Thunder is about learning new skills

There are many skills required in rugby and we have access to national team players, so you learn from the best.


6. Thunder is about making friends

You can put on your tough face before your first game and laugh about it afterwards. The more intense the team’s task, the deeper the friendship.


7. Thunder is about appreciation

We rely on the generosity of others, like Shawnigan Lake School, to provide us training facilities and room and board. It’s in our culture to show appreciation. Here presenting a signed print to Shawnigan Rugby Camp Director, Ander Monro.


8. Thunder is about experiencing the rewards of hard work

We instituted a player of the match award that gets passed from game to game. Fame can be fleeting 😉 but hard work and excellence is recognized in the Thunder culture.


9. Thunder is about learning to deal with adversity

Sometimes in rugby you get injured and can’t participate on the field but you can still support your team and contribute. Learning to deal with disappointments and come back stronger is part of the Thunder culture.


 10. Thunder is about meeting inspirational people

 Whether eating meals with national teams players at Shawnigan or meeting their family on the sideline, you’ll be introduced to people who will inspire you.


 11. Thunder is about learning Aboriginal culture

One  of the most  important aspects of the Thunder experience is learning about Aboriginal culture. Whether it’s learning a new song or feasting at the University of Victoria First People’s House, you will be immersed in Aboriginal culture.




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