Rugby is a demanding and highly physical game, so your training and practice has got to be top notch if you want to be a top performer. Here are some handy tips to get you playing at your very best:
- Importance of a training plan
To cope with the physical demands and onslaught of a rugby match and even excel within it, you’ll want your body to be at peak condition. To impose on a game, you must be the strongest, fittest, fastest player on the pitch. A thorough and structured training plan is crucial. Gym work without purpose is not going to cut it, you need a tailored program to stick to.
The ability to stick with a plan is also important. Many people give up too quickly, before they see any real results. Commitment to a structured training plan can be the difference between being a good player and becoming a great player.
- Focus on one area
Part of a structured training plan should be focusing on one area of fitness before moving onto another. Maintaining the other elements is important but focus all energy on one specific area at a time to progress in, rather than exhausting yourself.
With rugby, the two main training periods are pre-season and in-season. In season focus will be on game performance, so training should be aimed at that. Pre-season is where you can focus on your physical development. This normally consists of a 12-week period, which can be split into blocks of 3, with a new area to focus on in each of these 3 periods.
- Whole body focus
This sport uses the whole body when playing, so your training should mirror that. You need full body movements, with all muscles working together in sync to create as much power as possible and as efficiently as possible. Check out some useful Rugby Drill Videos at https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Rugby/ Training sessions must include work on:
Lower and upper body training moves
Pushing and pulling exercises are used
Compound exercises are included (those that include multi-muscle and multi-joint movements)
Big muscle groups are focused on before smaller muscle groups
- Concentrate on weaknesses
A significant injury can end a playing career, so it’s vital to do all you can to prevent injury. Whilst contact injuries are to be expected to some degree, it’s imperative to do as much as possible to avoid non-contact injuries like torn muscles for example.
All muscle groups need equal training and attention, not just the ones you like to train. If you don’t foster the whole-body outlook, you can create an imbalance, making injury more likely. Don’t ignore some of the muscle groups that are often overlooked, including the back, triceps and hamstrings.