Established in 2015, the Institute of Rugby was created by a group of sports-driven individuals who decided to accept the challenge of providing a top-notch platform for young, aspiring athletes to thrive in.

Since our journey began, our team has adopted the mentality of continuously growing and evolving to provide state of the art coaching, resources and facility access for all who walk through our doors.

We are a dynamic, multi faceted organization that provides opportunities for athletes at a variety of ages and abilities, catering to the development level of all. Our coaches have built our programming on the principle of developing the total-athelte which includes components that stretch beyond the field. Explore the Total-Athlete Development System and Long-Term Athlete Development Pathway which are the foundations in which our programming is built upon.

Our goal is to provide you, the athlete, the optimal enviornment for you to achieve the aspirations you have set before yourself.



Matt Hawkins

Matt Hawkins

Founder - Director of Coaching

As a player, Matt started his career in the United States playing for OMBAC rugby club and was part of the Super League Championship side in 2006. He also represented the SoCal Griffins Men’s team at the Territorial Championship in 2007 and played in the North America 4 Championships in 2008.

Matt then went on to play for the USA 7’s side and Captained the team for a number of years and represented the United States at 2 7’s Rugby World Cups in 2009 & 2013. Matt has represented the Eagles 15s team and was capped in 2010 during the Churchill Cup and is a former USAR Board member and held a position on the Rugby Committee. Matt first started coaching when he was 18 and has always had a passion for it.

Matt has coached the full spectrum, from Youth U8 players all the way through College and to the highest accolade as National team Head Coach. Matt steered Belmont Shore to three 7s National Championship Finals in 2009,2010 & 2011 and won two of those Championships. In Matt’s first year as the San Diego State Head Coach he took the team to the D1AA 15s National Championship Final in 2012. In 2012 Matt also coached the first AZTEC 7s team and helped them Qualify for the US National Championships in their inaugural year. 2012 also presented Matt with the opportunity to lead the All Marine Rugby team to their first Armed Forces 7s Championship title and for the 2013/2014 7’s World Series, Matt was the Olympic 7s program Head Coach.

In 2015 Matt was part of a group that brought PRO Rugby to San Diego and will fulfilled a General Manager role and Assistant Coach role for the San Diego based side in PRO Rugby’s inaugural year. Matt in 2016 took the lead as the SoCal Griffins Head Coach.

Matt has spent a lot of his time dedicated to the San Diego Rugby community and has dedicated many hours to the Youth and High School programs, helping to develop the next generation of Eagles from the San Diego County area, but more importantly providing a platform and a conduit for the players he works with to have direct interaction with College Rugby programs to help identify the next step in their academic and rugby career with rugby serving as the launchpad to attain those goals.

Hannah Lockwood

Hannah Lockwood

Founder - Director of Operations

As a player, Hannah started her rugby career in 2007 and was part of the Rugby Oregon All-stars for all three years of her high school career. Once graduated, Hannah continued her playing career at Oregon State University where she captained the team all four years. During her time at Oregon State, she earned caps for the Junior and Collegiate All-American programs touring internationally to both the Bahamas and Paris, France. Once completing her time at Oregon State, Hannah continued her rugby career with the USA Women’s 7s program training at the Olympic Training Center for two years and earning her first international cap for the Eagles.
Throughout her years playing, Hannah has held multiple coaching roles including Head Coach for the San Diego Regional All-Star Team, Technical Coach for the SoCal Griffins and Assistant Coach for the San Diego Surfers 7s team. Hannah has spent her time over the past few years investing in the local SoCal community and spending time growing and fostering athletes who participate in all age grades. Hannah has a special passion for growing and developing girls rugby and recently has launched the San Diego Girls Rugby program, a non-contact girls only league designed to get more girls in the game. From activating youth programs to coaching high performing athletes, Hannah has a deep passion for elevating the game of rugby in the local SoCal community.

Paige Crawford

Paige Crawford

MS, RD, CSSD; Performance Dietitian; EXOS

Paige provides nutrition education and consultations to diverse clientele from professional and elite athletes to youth athletes, general adults, and former athlete populations. Paige is also our go-to for all things nutrition based at the Institute of Rugby.
Henry Dembrowski

Henry Dembrowski

Performance Specialist

Hank is the EXOS Performance Coach for the Institute of Rugby athletes. Hank handles all of the Institute of Rugby’s physical performance testing, performance programming and executing leads all on-field speed and agility training and in the gym strength and conditioning.

Roy Holmes

CSCS, USATF, USAW, XPS; Performance Manager

Roy Holmes joined EXOS (Formerly know as Athletes’ Performance) in 2011 as an Elite and Amateur Performance Specialist.

Roy began his career as a Physical Therapy Aide with the Center for Athletic Performance in Scottsdale, Arizona. Throughout Roy’s career he has had the opportunity to work with several NFL, CFL and Arena football athletes, such as Grey Cup winner Airabin Justin and Super Bowl champion Keith O’Neil. During the 2012 combine season Roy was able to work with the number one over draft pick in the NFL Andrew Luck (Stanford) and offensive lineman Ben Heenan of the CFL. Roy also over saw the top over all Defensive back, Josh Robinson (UCF), who ran a 4.33 yd time. Roy prides himself as a movement and speed development specialist and is the current head strength and conditioning coach for the San Diego Breakers Rugby team.

Roy is a certified strength and conditioning specialist (CSCS) and a graduate of Northern Arizona University, where he played as a defensive back for the Lumberjacks. Roy is currently the performance manager for EXOS San Diego, California and a consultant for the Institute of Rugby. 



Want to join the Institute of Rugby team? We are now offering a few internship positions within our organization to give students the opportunity to further their education in a fast paced, start-up environment! Check out the current posting below or reach out to our Internship Manager at media@instituteofrugby.com if you have any questions!


This position is expected to start May 1st, 2017 and continue through the end of August 2017 (time frame can be slightly adjusted based on interns academic calendar or required hours). This is a part-time Internship at 10-15 hours per week (Internship hours can be added up to 30 hours per week to fill academic requirements).

The primary focus of this position is to engage the southern California community through digital newsletters, weekly articles and athlete highlights and various other forms of written and digital communication. Intern will be responsible for writing and sending bi-weekly newsletters with recaps and information on upcoming events. Intern will also be responsible for writing articles specific to each event running through the duration of the internship.

Responsibilities include: 

  • Write and send bi-weekly digital newsletters to Institute of Rugby community
  • Write article recaps on all events through the duration of the internship.
  • Attend various training sessions to interview athletes or participants.
  • Representing Institute of Rugby professionally at all events, camps and clinics and through digital media outlets.
  • Reporting to Internship Supervisor, Hannah Lockwood.


  • Earn experience and insight into working for a high profile sports company.
  • Earn experience in written communication.
  • Earn experience in digital communication production.

Percentage of duties:

90% Written communication; newsletter production, articles etc.
10% Misc.

Intern should expect to work some nights and weekends during their internship period. Intern should be able to work independently and with a team and have a go-getter attitude. Intern should have excellent writing skills and experience with using google docs. 


Please send the following contact information, along with the answers to the questions listed below and a resume to Hannah Lockwood at media@instituteofrugby.com. Please list the job title you are applying for in the subject line.

Contact information





Rugby Experience (if any):


Phone #:


How did you hear about this position?

Please answer the following questions:

  • Please describe all relevant experience in written communication. 
  • In less than 500 words, what do you envision being the greatest foreseeable challenges and opportunities in this position?
  • What three qualities do you possess that will be most helpful with this position and why?

All Institute of Rugby employees and interns will need to be background checked.  Would you be willing to consent to a background check?