View Full Version : Training for Rugby

09-09-2010, 02:06 PM

I'm planning on getting into rugby as a team is forming at the university and it will have backing from the school next year. I am not familiar with rugby in any way possible other than the basic concept of it and why so many non-Americans dislike American football. Anyhow, I'm looking for some help on here as far as what to focus my training on, and if anyone who is very familiar with the sport can lend me a hand with training to perform. Any help would be appreciated.



10-09-2010, 05:27 PM
General Size and Power is a good thing. The local University coach tells his athletes to do a combination of 5 power lifts, done on alternating days. Agility and explosiveness are more important than brute strength though. Keep in mind that you have to run continuously for like, 70 minutes. Crossfit football combined with power lifts, and alternate in sprinting and and distance runs closer to the season. That's my plan to prepare for the spring season. I think alot of cleans and squats are a good idea, because speed is an awsome thing to have at any position.

10-10-2010, 03:24 AM
Rugby, unlike a lot of sports requires you to run or be moving for 80 minutes but with explosive sprints, chasing high balls, clearance kicks etc.

After playing for 8 years I would suggest circuit training once a week at least for the fitness and explosive side of things.

On top of that the second most important thing is leg strength, upper body is a bonus but if you have a nice, strong set of wheels you will go forward in contact, Rugby is a game that is all about little bits of momentum, and 'Getting over the Gain line' so after every ruck, maul or scrum the aim is to get a few inches, feet or yards further each breakdown. Due to the offside rule that you will be explained i am sure, it means that your opposite team are backtracking.

So Squats are great of course, but from my experience people would not just train for the heaviest weight, they would go to about 80% of their 1RM and explosively perform the movement as much as possible to imitate the contact area. I would suggest this would be your approach to most of your big movements.

I do not know if you have something like the 'Bleep Test' but it is ideal to imitate the quick change of pace and direction needed in rugby.

As for general strength training you have to make sure that you can keep the fitness moving with it, otherwise you are useless to the team. Good luck and enjoy it, its a great sport.

I am not a coach and nor do i have any qualifications to back up the above, I am just talking from experience :)

11-03-2010, 07:11 PM
6 weeks in and we are going pretty solid. I realize at this point that developing additional strength during the season is near impossible. I will have two or three months off in winter in which I will be bulking. I've played two games so far and had an absolute riot. I play lock, but I'm a little small for lock (thankfully locks in collegiate are not as big as they are in men's club). I'm 6' and 195lbs. I'm planning on being around 215lbs for next spring, and I'll probably end up shaving down to 205lbs after conditioning starts back up. I realize now that Olympic lifts plus some solid power lifts are key to playing.

By the way, Kiff, we have several players from England and Ireland!


11-12-2010, 06:40 AM
Most sports require more strength and speed, but the thing that really sets great programs apart from good programs is an effective conditioning program.

The aerobic system is the most important energy system. This doesn't mean you have to condition with low intensity long distance running, however. Heavy, high intensity lifting for long duration (~20 minutes, although I wouldn't jump into that right away). Lots of weight, lots of rest, everything done fast. This is how you can condition yourself to keep your speed and strength up for the whole match.

The bitch about it is it's hard work... you'll need to eat copious amounts of food.