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TIME-OUT participants try their hand at rugby in Newcastle

NEWCASTLE (TIME-OUT) - Participants in FIBA's TIME-OUT program have begun the first of their on-site modules, at Northumbria University, in Newcastle, United Kingdom, this week.

The group of more than 70 veteran and recently-retired basketball players from across Europe was in the northern British city as part of FIBA's one-off program which is being run in conjunction with Erasmus+, an initiative of the European Union.

The group was working at Northumbria's Newcastle Business School, which will offer a range of leadership and management courses to participants, assisting them in the transition from player to working in other fields within the scope of basketball.

As part of the Newcastle workshop, the players interacted with the Newcastle Falcons rugby club. The meeting served two purposes as they got to step out to try their hand at playing rugby and met with the Falcons' management team.

Got to chance play some rugby 🏉 #falconsrugbystadium

A post shared by Anete Jekabsons Zogota (@anetejz) on

During the rugby session, it was of little surprise to see the participants from rugby playing nations such as Great Britain leading the way in what was a somewhat exotic sport for a number of partakers.

FIBA Players visit Newcastle Falcons from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

There was strong engagement from the participants as they used the opportunity to pick the brains of the Falcons Managing Director Mick Hogan and Marketing Manager Melanie Magee.

Hogan revealed details on players earnings pre- and post-retirement. Typically professional rugby players earn around £100,000 at retirement but recent surveys have revealed that, in the 12 months after retiring, this figure dropped to between around £25,000 and £35,000, or just a third of what they were earning. The findings also revealed that rugby players did not anticipate the extent of this drop, highlighting the need for effective career transition.

The participants in the TIME-OUT program will next come together in Slovenia in July 2018 for their second workshop. There will however be a seminar in the House of Basketball in Mies, Switzerland prior to then.