NZIS Touch Academy

Touch is one of the fastest growing sports in New Zealand with over 317,000 participants nationwide (Touch NZ). The New Zealand Institute of Sport has recognised this trend and is looking to provide opportunities for young aspiring athletes to excel with not only their sport performance, but also in terms of education and personal growth.

NZIS Touch Academy players will have the opportunity to compete in the elite local competition in Christchurch. The NZIS Touch Academy will also tour Australia at the end of the third term, putting the finishing touches to your training before the Canterbury trials. The NZIS Touch Academy players will also gain Touch NZ Coaching and Referee Level Certificates while training so that you will be the “complete” Touch athlete.

Whether your sporting goals and aspirations are to play for Canterbury, to play for the New Zealand Touch Blacks, or just to improve your skills as a touch athlete, then our Academy programme will significantly assist you in achieving them.

NZIS has had many representative Touch players among its past and present students, such as Lewis Brown of the Auckland Warriors. In recent years, many Canterbury and National touch players have made their mark on the national and international scene in the world of sport. Touch rugby has served as an successful launching pad for elite athletes and an effective training ground for players to hone their skills and move onto professional playing contracts in similar codes.

The NZIS Touch Academy Manager is Chris Muagututi’a (aka Roosda).

Chris is a born and bred Cantabrian and was educated at Shirley Boys’ High School. Chris earned his first Canterbury colours debuting for the Canterbury Men’s 30 Team in 1994. He went on to represent New Zealand with the New Zealand Men’s 40 Queensland Tour in 2004 and finally at the 2005 All Nations Tournament held in Christchurch.

Chris has coached various Canterbury teams, eventually finding his niche with the specialised Mixed team format. He won his first international gold as the assistant coach for the New Zealand U21 Mixed Team at the 2005 Youth World Cup and then gold as a National coach with the New Zealand Touch Blacks Mixed Team at the 2005 All Nations Tournament. Chris was appointed Head Coach for the New Zealand U19 Mixed Team that competed at the 2009 Youth World Cup in Auckland.

Chris has been working for the NZ Institute of Sport in tutorial roles and guidance and support for a number of years and enjoys the challenge of making the Touch Academy and its participants the best they can be.

New Zealand Institute of Sport