World Rugby launched an educational resource to support the practical implementation of the breakdown law application guideline announced in April.
With the objective of making one of the game's most dynamic and difficult facets simpler to play, coach and officiate, the resource has been developed with the input of leading coaches including New Zealand's Joe Schmidt and Ian Foster, Scotland's Richie Gray and England's Russell Earnshaw.
Player representatives Josh Beaumont of England and Victor Vito of New Zealand also participated, alongside international referees Wayne Barnes of England and South Africa's Jaco Peyper.
Available on the World Rugby website, the resource outlines guidance for the tackler, the ball carrier, the first arriving player, other arriving players and dealing with foul play.
"This resource has been developed by those who are involved in the game on a daily basis," said Gray.
"It is designed to assist coaches, players and referees with alignment that the breakdown is coached in the spirit of the laws, is played in a positive and accurate manner, and refereed consistently across competitions and at all levels.
"As I coach, I believe that we have to invest the time to coach the breakdown better.
"In turn, this should make it easier for the referee who has to make split-second decisions."
The law application guideline was announced in April but was not implemented until this weekend.
This was due to the suspension of sport caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Subsequently, New Zealand’s Super Rugby Aotearoa, which started on Saturday, was the first competition to use the guideline.
"The breakdown is the most dynamic facet of the game and was increasingly difficult for a player, coach and match official, while being responsible for nine per cent of match injuries at the elite level," said World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont.
"We therefore set out to identify ways to reduce the risk of injury, while promoting a fair contest for the ball and enhancing the experience for all.
"As announced in April the specialist law review group felt that the most practical approach was to reinforce existing law, rather than law change.
"The educational guidance is an exceptional piece of work.
"I would like to thank all involved and look forward to seeing it in action in the Super Rugby Aotearoa in New Zealand this weekend."