Easter prepared for coaching transition

Date published: April 29 2016

Harlequins number eight Nick Easter is ready for the extra work that will come with his role next season as the club's defence coach.

The former England international was announced this week as part of a new backroom staff for next season following Conor O'Shea's departure.

Current head coach John Kingston will take over as director of rugby, with Mark Mapletoft promoted to head coach and former England forwards coach Graham Rowntree joining the club.

Easter has built up his coaching experience with local side Wimbledon Rugby Club over the last few seasons, developing his approach as a coach in time for the step up with Harlequins.

“The hours are going to shoot up for sure; not in the gym – I will sub them for meetings, which I am not fussed about,” Easter told the Premiership website.

“I’ve spent enough time in gyms but the hours will go up, especially early on when I’m planning and learning, trying to get messages across, getting that clarity and making people understand what it is I want to achieve.

“I loved it at Wimbledon. I did a lot of work with the forwards and planning and taking sessions twice a week.

“But also, it’s the delivery and how you are with players that you have to learn. I’ve made cock-ups, and loads of mistakes but you’re driven to improve and often left annoyed that you did something or said something which didn’t work.

“If a drill doesn’t work then it doesn’t matter, but it’s all about communicating in the right way. You need to have that relationship with the players. They have got to trust what you’re about, trust what you’re telling them. It has been invaluable.

“My relationship with the guys will change. It has to as I’m on the other side of the fence now. I think they realise that.

“I have a strong personality and have a little bit of authority anyway. The laughing and joking in the changing room, my place in the social environment may have to change slightly but at the end of the day you’re still a human being, you are still working towards a common goal.

“I am very new to this role, so I will say to some of the senior guys ‘how do you think I’m doing?’, ‘how can I improve?’ and they will have plenty to say and I want them to be perfectly honest – which will help with the relationship.”