Sir Clive Woodward - A Few Wise Words Book

Sir Clive Woodward

Sir Clive Woodward

Originally intending to pursue a career in football, Clive Woodward would learn rugby instead at his boarding school in Wales. He eventually excelled at the game, enjoying spells at Harlequins and Leicester, and playing for the England national team. Following his playing career, Clive became a highly regarded rugby coach.

After training the England Under 21s, he was appointed as the England coach in 1997, building a hugely successful team using his unique coaching methodology. From 2000 to 2003, the England team won 41 out of 46 matches, and famously won the Rugby World Cup in 2003. Clive is a successful business speaker and coach, a TV commentator, and media columnist, and was director of sport for Team GB at the Beijing 2008, Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 Olympics. He is currently director of sport for the Apex2100 International Ski Academy in Tignes, France.


If you think a particular role or career makes real sense and you are able to do it, just follow your dreams, follow your passion, throw everything at it and work really hard. The worst thing that you can possibly do is to have a dream but not pursue it, and then look back years later with regret and say, “I really wish I had made the effort to try that.

Someone with a good attitude will always push themselves to become even better at something, and they will make the time, as part of their discipline, for additional learning and self-improvement.

I will often say to young people: “OK, so your parents are doing that for you . . . your school and your teachers do that for you . . . or your employer does that for you. So what, then, are you doing?

It is important for parents, in my view, to not only encourage their kids to enjoy their education, but to help them respect their teachers and to understand what they are trying to do for them. Teaching is not an easy profession, and parents have a role to play in helping teachers too, through encouraging their children to show good behaviour, respect and appreciation.

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