tight hips after rugby
Tim Howard

Why do I have tight hips after rugby?

Unlike knees and shoulders, hips are very hard to tape up, and injuries to the hips are often harder to prevent and treat. That goes a long way to explaining why you have tight hips after your rugby games, here’s some other info.

what does whey protein do
Patrick Dale

What does whey protein actually do?

Most rugby players should consume around two grams of protein per kg of body weight per day. So how do you get enough? During the season, rugby players need whey protein – here’s how it will help you.

sleep rugby training
Tim Howard

The importance of sleep in rugby training

Training for and playing rugby take a huge amount out of your body. It depletes your energy resources and causes muscle breakdown. The only way to full recover is to do nothing, to sleep deeply and to avoid over-training. Here’s how…

rugby anaerobic training focus
Training Team

Are ruggers too focused on anaerobic training?

Sprinting, tackling, scrummaging, and lifting and jumping in the lineout all utilize the two anaerobic energy pathways – the creatine phosphate system and the lactate system. But before you hang up your running shoes for good, it’s important to consider the role of the aerobic system in rugby.

rugby club agility ladder
Training Team

Does your rugby club need agility ladders?

Does your rugby club need agility ladders? Our training team examines the fad of agility and speed ladders to figure out whether your rugby club / team needs to bother getting them for your pre-season training.

pasta before rugby games
Patrick Dale

Should I eat pasta before a rugby game?

Pasta is low in fat, high in carbs, easy to digest, and readily available. This all suggests that it’s the ideal pre-game carb source for rugby players. And for many ruggers, pasta is a good nutritional choice.

rugby training matter without sleep
Training Team

Does rugby training matter without sleep?

As rugby players, we like to brag about spending extra time in the gym. But considering the positive effects of sleep for recovery and muscle growth/repair, maybe we should be bragging about staying in bed.

Shoulder strapping before playing rugby
Training Team

Shoulder strapping before playing rugby

After the knees, the shoulder is the most commonly injured joint in rugby. 20% of rugby injuries are to the shoulder, and 35% of those injuries are recurrent. So how do you strap your shoulders before rugby games? Pat Dale explains.

creating leverage scrum camp
Clarke Cayton

Scrum Camp Pt 2 – Creating Leverage

You’ve reached Day 2 of your club’s annual scrum camp. In this section, we’ll cover technique, instruction and how to challenge your players to create leverage at scrum time. Big thanks to Carrick Pell for his help in programming Day 2.

When to retire from rugby?
Nick McCashin

Absolutely Broken – When to retire from Rugby?

When is it time for me to retire from rugby? Is it after the second broken cheek or the fifth? Or was I supposed to retire after the ACL reconstruction? It was hard for me to know and probably hard for you too!

5 training routines from international teams
Training Team

Training routines from 6 national rugby squads

Train like the best rugby teams in the world if you want to get better. These 6 training routines are taken from the best 15s (and 1 of the best 7s) rugby programs in the world.

Squat variations to prevent injury
Training Team

Squat variations to guard against injury

Is it possible to improve your 1RM back squat without risking injury from heavy squat sessions? You bet! Try these squat variations – in particular the overhead and front squat – to develop functional strength without the added stress on your joints.

set up a scrum camp
Clarke Cayton

Crouch, Bind, Set Up A Scrum Camp

Summer scrum camps are the best way to develop technical knowledge across your entire forward pack. Get ready to Crouch, Bind and Set as Clarke Cayton walks us through Day 1 of summer scrum camp.

Clarke Cayton

Beat the Heat – 10 Pool Exercises for Summer

Nobody wants to be training when the weather gets hot. But our friend Clarke T. Cayton has some great tips for taking your summer rugby training to the pool so you can ‘beat the heat this year’. #rugby #summer #training

agility training while traveling
Training Team

Can I improve my agility while traveling this summer?

If you’re traveling this summer, your rugby conditioning is likely to suffer. Off-season rugby training probably hasn’t started for you yet. But in the meantime, try these speed/agility hacks while you’re traveling this summer.

train rugby back injury
Patrick Dale

How to train around a lower back injury

How do you continue rugby training despite a lower-back injury? Pat Dale explains how to muscle through with a couple of management techniques that will allow you to keep training. But lower backs are tricky, so consult a trainer first.

contrast baths for rugby recovery
Patrick Dale

Why contrast baths are so good for post-rugby recovery

You’ve probably been told and resisted ice baths more than once. But luckily the science suggests that contrast baths are a better option. Try a contrast bath this weekend and let us know how your recovery goes!

mechanical dropsets for rugby
Patrick Dale

Mechanical drop sets for extra muscle gain

Why would you need extra muscle in rugby? If you’re under-sized, it can be really hard to compete in contact, set piece and at the breakdown. Adding some bulk using mechanical dropsets to drive hypertrophy can also be a terrific way to prevent contact injuries.

returning2rugby broken leg 4
Clarke Cayton

When Rugby Breaks Your Stride – Pt4 Re-entry Phase

You’re read about the injury, a brutal broken leg, a trip to hospital and 6 months on the sidelines. Now we get to hear the end of Clarke Cayton’s story, his return to rugby for his Springfield team. Welcome back Clarke and congrats on the recovery!

broken leg workouts for rugby comeback
Tim Howard

Post broken-leg workouts to fuel your rugby comeback

Of all the injuries you can suffer playing rugby, a broken leg is arguably the most traumatic. Whether it’s the tibia, fibula, or femur, a broken leg bone means many weeks out and a lengthy period of rehabilitation. Here’s our guide to making a rugby comeback from your broken leg injury.

lose weight play prop rugby
Training Team

Is it possible to lose weight and still be a Prop?

A recent question was put to our training team – is it possible to lose weight and still be a Prop? Sure it is! As long as you train for strength, lose fat (NOT muscle) and forget the faddy diets. Here’s a breakdown of how to lose weight and still be a Prop.

Best treadmill exercises for rugby training
Patrick Dale

Best Treadmill Exercises for Rugby Training

If it’s the middle of winter (or summer) and you can’t get out on the rugby field, how do you get your cardio up for the season? If you’re looking at the cardio machines in the gym, think about using some of these treadmill exercises and get after it!

Intermittent fasting during rugby season
Patrick Dale

Intermittent Fasting; can it be used during rugby season?

Can you use intermittent fasting as part of your diet during rugby season? It’s certainly possible, but with quite a few caveats. This article explores the concept and describes the kind of player who might use IMF during the rugby season.

cut bulk or maintain for rugby
Training Team

Should I cut, bulk or maintain mass for rugby?

Should you cut weight, bulk up or maintain your mass for this rugby season? The answer is, it really depends. But there are a few things you should take into consideration when deciding on your training goals this year. Here’s a brief recap.

ankle strength for rugby season
Patrick Dale

How to get strong ankles for rugby season

One of the most debilitating body parts to injure is the ankle joint. Twists, sprains, and breaks can stop even the hardest charging rugger in their tracks – luckily we have Pat Dale to explain how you can strengthen your ankles for this rugby season.

how to train specifically for your rugby position
Tim Howard

How to train specifically for your position

Not all rugby players fit into the same mold. The physical demands of each position require a different kind of training depending on where you’re going to play. So in this blog we’ve done our best, in a few words, to explain how to train specifically for your rugby position, without overthinking the whole process.

hill sprints and cycling for rugby training
Patrick Dale

Should I cycle or do hill sprints this season?

Question: I’m training for rugby season – should I do hill sprints or cycling? The good news is, you can do both during your cardio training. Follow our Tabata, Pyramid and Death Riff programs for the best of cycling and sprint training.

Nick McCashin

Goal Kicking Mindset – from Good to Great

Rugby goal kickers are often the first to be picked in the team. Securing vital points for your team is crucial at any level. It can be the difference between winning and losing. Goal kicking mindset is vital for top

shoulder training for rugby players
Tim Howard

Shoulders and rugby – what do I need to know?

What do you (rugby players!) need to know about shoulder training? It’s the most complex joint in the body and so many things can go wrong, it’s critical to understand shoulder stability and strength if you’re going to train effectively to prevent shoulder injuries this rugby season.

in-season rugby training tips
Patrick Dale

Three Tips for In-season High Intensity Training

Rugby season is in full swing in many places. How do you stay strong, fast and lean during the season when you’ve gotta throwdown at 2 rugby training sessions and during a game as well? Here are three tips for keeping your in-season training super high-intensity!

Rugby players need crave sugar
Training Team

Why rugby players crave/need sugar

Why do rugby players need and at the same time crave sugar? Rugby demands energy. LOTS of energy! For that, complex carbohydrates in the form of sugars are some of the most important foods for rugby players to be eating.

rugby fit without eating breakfast
Training Team

Can you get rugby-fit without eating breakfast?

Caloric restriction is becoming a popular diet strategy – so we’re asking, can you get rugby-fit without eating breakfast? Sure can, here’s how. It’s a common misconception that you need as many calories as you consume. Intermittent fasting has captured the imagination of citizens, athletes and rugby players. Here’s why.

best balance training for rugby players
Patrick Dale

Best balance training for rugby players

What is the best way to become a more agile rugby player? Balance baby, balance. Ever notice how the agilest rugby players can accelerate from any body position? Yup, this article will show you how they do it.

smoothie recipes for after rugby games
Training Team

Smoothie recipes for after rugby games

what you consume immediately after your rugby game can have a big impact on your rate of recovery. Don’t miss this window! Try one of our smoothie recipes, designed specifically for use after rugby games and training. Get the protein you need and the electrolytes your body craves with these smoothie recipes.

lineout explosion drills
Training Team

Explosion drills for lineout jumpers

The winner of the lineout is often the team with the fastest, highest jumpers. Here is a compilation of the 10 best explosion drills for lineout jumping. Get out there and start jumping higher, you’ll win more ball and your lifters will thank you.

Bodyweight training for in-season strength maintenance
Patrick Dale

Bodyweight training for in-season strength maintenance

Research suggests that just one or two workouts per week can maintain strength and power during the in-season rugby training period. During this time, you’ve also got rugby training, games and recovery sessions, so it’s critical to tailor in-season training maintaining strength.

gymnastic strength training for rugby
Tim Howard

Gymnastic strength training for rugby players

How can you use gymnastic strength training to become a better rugby player? Our training team explains the relationship between rugby and gymnastics. Especially for older rugby players, the gymnastic focus on flexibility and mobility can help you prolong your rugby career.

building a crazy cardio base
Training Team

Building a crazy cardio-base without running

How do you build a cardio base for rugby season without running? It comes down to exercise selection. The #1 thing you want to do is avoid injury. So we recommend eliminating impact in your cardio training by jumping in the pool, on the bike or the rowing machine this pre-season.

Five otc supplements every rugby player needs
Patrick Dale

Five over the counter (OTC) supplements every rugger needs

Can you get a performance boost from the grocery store? Supplements can be an incredibly powerful way to improve your rugby performance. But you don’t need to spend a zillion $$$. Try these five over the counter supplements every rugby player needs in their kit bag.

cardio for rugby players
Tim Howard

How much cardio do rugby players really need?

How much cardio do rugby players need? The answer is it depends on your levels of fitness, position and goals for the upcoming season. But in general terms, you probably want to have a higher cardio base than you have now. Here’s how to get that cardio.

using post rugby in your after match smoothies
Training Team

4 ways to use post-rugby in your smoothies

Post-Rugby facilitates recovery from a variety of angles. We designed this post-rugby supplement to be packed with electrolytes, creatine and BCAAs. Here are our top 4 ways to use Post-Rugby in your after rugby smoothie recipes.

OTC supplements for cognitive function
Tim Howard

OTC supplements for cognitive function gains

Our team is deeply committed to creating supplements and stacks that provide cognitive gains for rugby players at training and during games. But you don’t have to rely on ruckscience.com for all your supplements. There is some create stuff you can get over the counter. Try these options!

rugby abs without sit-ups
Training Team

Getting rugby player abs without sit-ups

Strong abs are a fitness must-have, but for rugby, they are much more than a fashion accessory. Here’s our playbook for getting rugby abs without sit-ups. Caution though: you’re going to have to eat well and train hard if you want to get anywhere near having rugby-player abs.

unknown rugby whey recipes
Patrick Dale

Six rugby whey recipes you probably haven’t thought of

Not sure how to mix our rugby-focused whey protein into a smoothie or baked goods? Here are six rugby whey recipes you probably haven’t thought of. They can be used in pre and post rugby smoothies recipes during the season.

Rugby strength without killing your joints
Training Team

Rugby strength without killing your joints

Rugby and strength training can both be tough on your joints. Here are Ruck Science’s 5 rules for successful joint-friendly strength training for rugby. We promise you fewer injuries, a greater range of motion and ultimately, more strength for the season.

train for rugby on business trip
Training Team

Can you train for rugby while on a business trip?

How do you manage to train for rugby while you’re on a business trip? Here are some tips for business trip workouts to keep you fit for Saturday’s game. It’s ideal for anyone who is going to miss training on Tuesday and Thursday, but who still wants to make the rugby game on Saturday.

protein for rugby players
Training Team

How much protein should rugby players eat?

Are you measuring your macronutrients? This blog covers macronutrients and in particular answers the question, how much protein should rugby players eat? It’s going to be different for every rugby player depending on your training goals and playing objectives.

Single arm movements for rugby-focused strength
Training Team

Single-limb movements for rugby-focused strength

What are the best single-limb movements for rugby players to use to develop strength for the rugby field? Here’s our breakdown of the top nine single-limb movements that (when incorporated into your training program) can help you become a better and stronger rugby player.

rugby speed training program
Training Team

A speed program for lightning-fast rugby wingers

Speed is one of the most intimidating factors in rugby. The faster you can sprint, the better you can evade the opposition, attack, score, or defend. Wingers, and to a lesser extent fullbacks, will need to train differently if they want to be lightning-fast on the rugby field.

power exercises for rugby
Patrick Dale

Power exercises for rugby players to master

Power is crucial in rugby. The more you produce, the harder you hit and the faster you can cover the field. Try these power exercises this pre-season. You’ll get stronger, leaner and more powerful in the process, all good things for rugby players!

weird ways to use our pre-workout for rugby
Tim Howard

10 weird ways to use our pre-workout powder

Sometimes just taking pre-workout in a shaker gets a bit boring. Here are 10 “weird” ways to use our pre-workout powder you might not have thought of. We’ve heard of it going into cocktails, milk and a whole bunch of other substances. Check them out here!

kettlebell exercises for lineout lifters
Training Team

Kettlebell exercises for lineout lifters

How can lineout lifters incorporate kettlebell exercises into their workouts? Our training team explains the benefit of kettlebells for lineout lifters. But you can also apply many of these same training principles if you’re a scrumhalf, centre or any other positional rugby player.

indoor rugby conditioning workouts
Patrick Dale

Indoor rugby-specific conditioning workouts

How do you train for rugby season if you can’t go outside? Simple. You try one of these rugby-specific conditioning workouts built to be done indoors. It’ll let you avoid the sun, the snow and any risk of a tan. But you’ll be fitter and stronger for the privilege.

rugby hooker fitness program
Training Team

A Hooker’s guide to rugby fitness

Outside centers + Hookers have the toughest jobs in rugby. This guide to rugby fitness for Hookers will get you in optimal shape to play hooker this coming rugby season. It’s full of training advice specific to the hooker position so you don’t need to worry about too many sprints!!

rugby recovery creatine
Training Team

Rugby recovery is better with Creatine

If you’re serious about your rugby, you should be serious about your recovery too. Creatine is one of the best rugby recovery supplements available. But sadly it’s not in every recovery supplement you’ll find on the market. Here’s why we think creatine is essential for rugby players.

after rugby games eat to recover
Patrick Dale

After rugby games, eat to recover

What should you eat right after a rugby match? Our training team breaks down what your body needs to recover fully and get ready for more rugby. It’s complete with analysis of water & electrolytes, glycogen and muscle microtrauma and how they impact post-rugby nutrition.

speed and power for rugby centres
Training Team

Speed and power for rugby centers

Both inside and outside centres need to be strong, fast, agile, and able to kick, pass, sidestep, and tackle like a boss. Centers are usually in the thick of it on the rugby field, so their training should reflect this reality.

Nick McCashin

The case for ‘bulking up’ for rugby

Discover the simple steps to build muscle for the upcoming rugby season. This article covers the case for bulking up, what foods to eat, programs to follow and supplements to swear by if you want to get bigger for rugby.

halftime diet and nutrition for rugby players
Training Team

Halftime nutrition and hydration protocols

Halftime nutrition is an incredibly overlooked aspect of rugby performance. Today’s blog deals with halftime diet and nutrition protocols for rugby players to use during rugby games. What should you hydrate with at halftime and how should you administer it to players on your team?

workout day before rugby match
Tim Howard

How to work out the day before a rugby match

You’ve got a rugby game tomorrow but you want to go to the gym for fear of getting wrecked before the game. No problem! A workout the day before a rugby match can actually show performance benefits. Here’s how to train on Friday for Rugby Day (Saturday!!!).

rugby boxing fitness
Patrick Dale

Box your way to pre-season rugby fitness

Why is boxing one of the best pre-season training methods for rugby players? Because boxing delivers an amazing rugby-specific cardio workout. Not to mention, boxing gives you a whole bunch of core and grip strength that are incredibly useful on the rugby field.

rugby wrestling
Training Team

Wrestling drills for rugby fitness

Can you develop rugby strength and fitness by using traditional wrestling drills? You bet! In fact, wrestling is one of the best cross-training techniques for rugby players. It doesn’t matter whether it’s in-season or off-season, wrestling works anytime baby!

stamina rugby flanker
Training Team

How to build the stamina of a SuperRugby flanker

The All Blacks are perhaps the best example of a rugby team that relies on stamina to win rugby games. But building rugby stamina is a long-term project. For our loose forward friends, here’s a guide developing the stamina of a SuperRugby flanker.

rugby pro strength program
Patrick Dale

How to build rugby prop strength

How do you build the strength of a rugby prop? This prop workout program is designed to help you develop the strength to play in the front row. Props need to be bulky, powerful and ultimately, really damn strong – that’s what this program promises.

Nick McCashin

Mike Delany Talks Lions Tour

Mike Delany is a world class rugby fly-half who can also play fullback. Most of his friends call him Mullys. Mullys is a one-test All Black, played Super Rugby and national provincial level in New Zealand.  Mike has also played

yoga for rugby players
Training Team

Yoga – a practical guide for rugby players

Our training team has developed a new flexibility training module that you might call ‘rugby yoga’. It’s basically a guide to yoga for rugby players including a basic pose progression you can use to increase mobility and core strength.

rugby muscular endurance
Training Team

Developing muscular endurance for the rugby field

Why do rugby players need muscular endurance? To get through all that tackling, scrummaging and more. But building muscular endurance takes time. So you need a plan – in fact, you need THIS plan to develop muscular endurance for the rugby field.

pre-season rugby diet
Patrick Dale

How to structure your pre-season rugby diet

A rugby player’s diet is during pre-season then it is in the rugby season. This pre-season rugby diet plan will help you get the most out of your training. It’s designed around helping you become a leaner, stronger rugby player with a higher power-to-weight ratio.

rugby ibuprofen chart
Tim Howard

When should rugby players use ibuprofen? [CHART]

Are you a rugby player? Then your body likely hurts and you’re probably taking ibuprofen. Stop that now! Rugby and ibuprofen don’t always mix well. Here’s a quick guide to help you determine whether you need ibuprofen, or just some rest.

nsaid rugby
Tim Howard

Are NSAIDs bad for rugby players?

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories are commonplace in most rugby club dressing rooms. But are NSAIDs bad for rugby players? It depends on the situation. Are you in severe pain? If not, you might want to reconsider your use of NSAIDs after rugby games.

rugby fitness tests
Training Team

Fit for rugby? Five rugby-specific fitness tests

How do you know if you’re fit enough for rugby? These fitness tests will give you a good baseline if you’re training for the upcoming rugby season. Note that fitness does not equal strength, there’s more to being rugby-fit being benching a whole lot.

Nick McCashin

Developing Speed with Conrad Smith

Conrad Smith is currently playing Rugby in the French premier competition (Top 14) for Pau (Section Paloise). Conrad recently retired from New Zealand rugby but he was a key leader and member of the All Blacks tallying an impressive 94 caps. He

suicide in rugby
Tim Howard

We need to talk about suicide in rugby

It’s not going to be a fun conversation. But it needs to happen. We need to talk about suicide in the rugby community because we are human beings before we are rugby players.

Neck trap strength rugby
Training Team

Building neck and trap strength for rugby players

For props and hookers especially it’s imperative that you have a strong neck and traps to scrummage. Here’s how to build that neck and trap strength for all rugby players. It’s most important for the front-row but all rugby players need strong necks.

concussion prevention
Nick McCashin

Knocked Out: Concussion & Prevention

Head knocks are common on the rugby field. And becoming more common by extension are concussion. We used to ignore them. We used to say “harden up”. But that’s all changed. Concussions are a major talking point in the rugby community and with good reason.

Nick McCashin

Training with Scotland’s 6Nations Squad

Scotland Rugby Training & What I Learned. Recently I was invited to Scotland’s Rugby training. (Thanks, Bryan Easson). I went along to two training sessions. One before the Ireland game and one before the France game. A number of the

best rugby training blogs
Training Team

Best rugby training blogs of the year

We’ve finally finished combing through the best rugby training blogs from 2016. Boy was there a lot to choose from! Here are the top 10 rugby training blog posts of 2016. Check in next year for an updated list of training blogs.

rugby sickness
Calvin Harrell

Sidestep sickness this rugby season

Staying healthy is critical if you want to get stronger, leaner or improve your rugby generally. For rugby players, sickness is an Achilles heel. It’s something we don’t think about a lot, but you have to know how to stay healthy if you’re going to get better.

hip drive rugby
Patrick Dale

How to develop hip drive for rugby

How do you develop hip drive for the rugby field? Read our complete guide to hip drive for rugby players and get to work this off season! It’s a much overlooked part of mobility and strength for rugby players.

mobilization of rugby injuries
Clarke Cayton

Returning to rugby: from a broken leg – pt3 mobilization

How hard is it to return to the rugby field after suffering a broken leg? Clarke Cayton explains the road back after sustaining his broken leg. It’s not an easy road, lots of rehab rest and support from his family. Read the story of his road back from a broken leg.

rugby acl injury
Nick McCashin

Returning to rugby: from a torn ACL

“There is no one to blame for my ACL injury but myself.” Nick McCashin explains what its like to get back on the rugby field after a torn ACL. The blog includes a complete breakdown of what it takes to recover from a torn ACL on the rugby field.

immobilization of rugby injuries
Clarke Cayton

When rugby breaks your stride – pt. 2 immobilization

Pt 2 in our series on what its like to break your leg playing rugby. Today, Clarke Cayton explains the immobilization phase of rugby leg injuries. You might imagine that it’s a lot of laying down and not much else. But you’d be wrong!

high school rugby players
David Weitz

How to recruit high school rugby players

How do you recruit high school rugby players into your rugby program? High school rugby and football coach David Weitz explains his recruiting strategy. Read it if you want to get more high-school players into your rugby program.

rugby lock performance
Nick McCashin

Optimal Performance as a Rugby Lock

Are you playing in the trenches this year? Locks do a helluva lot of work around the rugby field, and yet seldom get the credit they deserve. This interview by Nick McCashin looks at the Lock position in rugby – with NZ provincial star Keepa Mewett.

impact of strength on rugby tackling
Tim Howard

How strength and power impact tackling ability

Tackling ability correlates directly with lower body power. During the season, tackling ability only gets better if your lower body power stays constant. Therefore, rugby players must maintain leg strength to improve or maintain tackling ability.

our rugby club partners
Training Team

What are the best-practices for rugby clubs?

Ruck Science is building the world’s largest library of rugby best-practices. What does your rugby club do better than any others? We’d like to know so the base of rugby-knowledge can be expanding to every rugby club on the planet.

Nick McCashin

Rugby Tour – Sangria & Broken Legs

My first ever senior men’s rugby tour was an amazing experience for a number of reasons. The Story goes… I was a young naïve 18 year-old sitting in the Lord Burleigh pub. Eight pints down in a heavy session with

college rugby alternative greek life
Nora Cowherd

College rugby as an alternative to greek life

Can playing rugby at college be a viable alternative to Greek Life? Nora Cowherd believes college rugby provides all the same benefits with few drawbacks. So if you’re looking for a college experience with community and athletics, rugby might be for you!

rugby goal kicking
Nick McCashin

Effortless rugby goal kicking

This guest post by former Bay of Plenty flyhalf Nick McCashin lays out useful rugby goal kicking drills. Want to be a rugby goal kicker? Follow Nick’s instructions on technique and training and then GET TO WORK kicking goals!

rugby ice baths
Nick McCashin

Recovery, Ice baths and the ‘ICE MAN’

Ice baths have become more and more popular in the professional rugby environment. It can be cost effective and easy to set up if you have a bag of ice, water, and a large barrel or bath. Some research suggests contrast baths are the next evolution…

Brutal Honesty about why we play rugby
Nick McCashin

Brutal Honesty & Why We Play Rugby

Have you ever sat in the stand and watched a game of professional rugby and felt like you were in the wrong place? I have. Here’s what made me honestly think about why I play rugby.

building mass for rugby
Nick McCashin

Does building mass matter for rugby players?

Have you ever been told by coaches that you are too small or you need to be bigger? Or perhaps you wished you were bigger? When I was a smaller rugby player, I could only imagine how much I would

Who would make your Lions team?
Nick McCashin

Who would make your Lions team?

Who will Warren Gatland pick for his Lions squad is anyone’s guess. He is in a fortunate position as many players have been putting their hand up throughout the Autumn Internationals. Who will make the cut? I weigh in with my two cents…

battling off season weight gain
Calvin Harrell

Battling off season weight gain

Calvin Harrell explains how to avoid serious off-season weight gain and stay in shape for the upcoming rugby season. Exercising during the holidays isn’t easy, but if you want to stay in shape for rugby, here are some tricks for the holidays.

rise in addication
Nick McCashin

The Rise In Addiction

There has been a spike in addictive behavior from women during the Christmas period. The significant increase in compulsive shoppers is similar to that of an addicted gambler working the slot machine. Today, we take a closer look at the problem…

evolution of rugby positions
Darryn Pollock

The evolution of rugby positions

How has each rugby position evolved? Modern-day rugby positions are much different than they were a few years ago. Darren Pollock explains how rugby has evolved over the past few decades to be the amazing game it is today. Learn about where rugby came from in this blog post.

why all blacks so good
Nick McCashin

Why are the All Blacks so good?

Living as a Kiwi in the UK. It is amazing how many people ask me…. Nick, why are the All Blacks so good? It’s like they are asking me because I have a secret to tell them or know something they don’t know. Why are the All Blacks so good?

young guns fire against Lions
Nick McCashin

Young guns ready to fire against Lions

Excitement is building quickly for the New Zealand Lions Series 2017 with many Kiwis applying for tickets in the ballot and UK-based fans planning their trips down under.

nutrition rugby recovery
Tim Howard

Nutrition tips for post-rugby recovery

What should you eat after a rugby game to optimize your recovery? Checkout our post-rugby nutrition tips and learn how to eat right to recover faster. We (almost) guarantee you’ll be less sore and better rested for Tuesday’s training.

best rugby recovery stretches
Patrick Dale

13 best rugby recovery stretches

How should rugby players use stretching to reduce DOMS and improve recovery? Here is a rundown of the best recovery stretches that any rugby player can do. Forget just focusing on strength training, flexibility and mobility both matter. Here’s how to improve them both.

caffeine rugby performance
Michael Hedlesky

Caffeine loading for increased rugby performance

How does the use of caffeine impact your performance on the rugby field? Mike Hedlesky examines the science behind caffeine and how to use it to boost your performance on the rugby field. ICYMI high-profile ruggers like George Gregan were well known for their caffeine pill use.

neural priming for rugby performance
Michael Hedlesky

Neural priming can maximize rugby performance

Can rugby players utilize neural priming to improve performance? In another brilliant blog post about strength training, Michael Hedlesky explains post-activation potentiation + how it may benefit rugby players before games and training sessions.

first rugby practice
Nora Cowherd

What to expect at your first rugby practice

If you are preparing to attend your first rugby practice, then the most important thing to bring is an open mind and willingness to learn. Oh, and water. Nora Cowherd explains what her first rugby practice was like, listen up new ruggers!!

rugby injury traumatic phase
Clarke Cayton

When rugby breaks your stride – pt. 1 Traumatic Phase

A traumatic leg injury can be a devastating experience to the amateur rugby player. When the incident occurs, the whole world instantly comes crashing down. The traumatic phase of a rugby injury usually occurs on the field so acting quickly is critical.

lower body conditioning rugby
Tim Howard

Lower-body conditioning for rugby – get a sled

Pushing, pulling and sprinting with a weighted sled might well be the best lower body conditioning strategy for rugby players to get fit for rugby season. It’s one of the most rugby-specific workouts you can do outside playing rugby (obviously!).

jefferson curls best exercise for rugby players
Tim Howard

Jefferson curls are the best exercise for rugby

Wait, put down the dumbbells! We don’t mean bicep curls. Jefferson Curls are the best exercise for rugby players – never heard of them, hey? They’re an ideal way to increase hamstring flexibility, grip strength and core strength all at the same time.

Nick McCashin

Paul Williams – smashing people since ’03

Paul Williams is a Samoan International and son of All Black legend Bryan Williams. Standing at 6 foot 2 and 105kg Paul is a very intimidating player to tackle for the average man.

professional rugby band of brothers
Nick McCashin

Professional Rugby and Band of Brothers

Based on preparation, experience, and instinct Captain Winters led his men in a very successful operation. I have always believed that when you are playing rugby, you want to be making correct decisions.

Being dropped and three broken cheeks
Nick McCashin

Being dropped and three broken cheeks

Have you ever been dropped from your team, overlooked in favor of someone else or not picked because the coach doesn’t like you? I have. Here’s the story of when I was dropped, three broken cheek bones, and what I learned from it all.

what is the breakdown in rugby
Juan Mouton

Understanding the breakdown in rugby

The breakdown is the most complex area of the game of rugby. Luckily we have Juan Mouton to explain just what is the breakdown in rugby. Complete with videos and analysis of each Law that governs how the breakdown works.

simon fathers rugby trainer
Nick McCashin

Performance specialist Simon Fathers talks rugby

The cornerstone of how I approach every training goal is to keep my clientele motivated and energetic. An individual may have ample amounts of skill, but their body will not work to its highest potential if their mind is not in absolute conjunction.” – Simon Fathers, Performance Specialist

rehydrate rugby players
Tim Howard

Best methods for re-hydrating rugby players

What are the best ways to hydrate as a rugby player? Learn how to avoid cramping, over-hydration and performance decline due to an ineffective fluid intake. Stop yelling “get him some water” – it might not be what the player needs to get hydrated.

watch rugby free online
Training Team

How we watch rugby free online

Where do you go to watch rugby free online? Lots of places! Here’s our list of the best places to find HD rugby games free online. Youtube isn’t the only place you can go, there are options for streaming and downloading all over the web.

odd object lifting for rugby
Training Team

Unconventional rugby training using odd objects

Unconventional rugby training begins and ends with odd object lifting, Michael Hedlesky explains how to get better at rugby by lifting weird stuff. Pick it up, put it down and over it around. Suddenly, you’ll be stronger and fitter!

breakdown defensive structure rugby
David Weitz

Defensive structure at the breakdown in rugby

How to you align your defense to be effective? Rugby coach David Weitz explains how to structure your defense from the breakdown. Complete with diagrams and explanations of each position away from the breakdown. Annnnnnnd up up up!!!

winning rugby flyhalf
Juan Mouton

The anatomy of a winning rugby flyhalf

What makes for a winning rugby flyhalf? Today we examine the flyhalf position and how to pick a winning team based on the play of their #10. South African journalist, Juan Mouton, details what he looks for when deciding if a flyhalf will be a good domestic player or a standout international.

rugby jiu jitsu
Tim Howard

Why rugby players should train Jiu Jitsu

Elite rugby programs are increasingly turning to brazilian jiu jitsu to teach players close contact skills. Here’s the lowdown on BJJ for rugby including reasons why you should training jiu jitsu if you’re a rugby player or a rugby coach getting your team ready for the season.

ultimate rugby protein shake
Nick McCashin

What is the ultimate rugby protein shake?

When you are short of time and have a limited supply of food or ingredients a pint of milk is your best bet after a workout. But if you have a decked-out kitchen, try this rugby-focused protein shake by Nick McCashin.

recovery tips for rugby
Tim Howard

10 stupid-simple recovery tips for rugby

The rugby game is over. The fight is done… for now. How do you get ready for next week? Try these 10 stupid-simple recovery tips for rugby players. Flossing, Hydrotherapy and Contrast showers? We’ve got the analysis to help you use them.

danielle ordway rugby 7s supplement
Danielle Ordway

What supplement do rugby 7s players need?

Rugby 7s is a unique form of rugby. Diet and training principles for rugby 7s are unique too. So then, what supplement do rugby 7s players need? We believe it’s something that delivers energy, increases bloodflow and doesn’t put stress on your adrenal gland.

l-citrulline for rugby players
Training Team

How L-citrulline can improve your rugby

Why should L-citrulline be a part of your rugby diet? Today we go for a deep dive on this pre-workout ingredient to test it for rugby performance benefits. It’s one of the most important amino acids you can consume – so get after it!

eating rugby 7s tournaments
Tim Howard

How to eat right at rugby 7s tournaments

What should rugby players eat at a rugby 7s tournament? Your rugby 7s diet should be vastly different than for a full game of 15s. You’ll want to stay away from caffeine and avoid any foods you’re not familiar with, here’s a quick guide including a meal plan for your 7s tournament.

rugby 15s rugby 7s
Calvin Harrell

Transitioning from 15s to rugby 7s

How do you transition from 15s rugby to rugby 7s? We spoke with former USA Eagles 7s coach Jules McCoy to find out the best ways to start training for 7s this summer. Hint – you’re going to be leaning out and doing a LOT more cardio!

rugby eternal contest
Darryn Pollock

Rugby: the eternal contest

The game of rugby is about the eternal contest. The contest for territory, possession and dominance over the opposition across the field. It’s beautiful and today Darryn Pollock explains how to think about rugby as a constant struggle.

coaching rugby zone system
David Weitz

Coaching rugby using a Zone System

How do you use a ‘zone system’ to help coach rugby players? David Weitz explains why the zone system is such an effective naming system for high school and college rugby teams. As a coach himself, it’s worth taking David’s advice on this structure and terminology.

Matt Morrell rugby career
Nick McCashin

Lessons from almost-pro rugby player Matt Morrell

Matt has recently retired from Rugby, but today he is a successful entrepreneur with his own security company Safe Simple and Secure, his security app and has many other successful investments and projects in the works. He was also an excellent center and an exceptional winger.

how to enjoy rugby
Training Team

What you need to know to enjoy watching rugby

It’s not the simplest game in the world. But there are a few things that it’s really beneficial to know if you’re going to enjoy watching rugby. Here’s our breakdown of what you need to know and a little bit of what you probably don’t as well.

rugby captain tips
Tim Howard

Rugby captain tips from a Navy SEAL

Have you ever found yourself captaining a rugby team and just not knowing what to say to inspire your troops? Being is charge isn’t always easy. We’ve compiled this list of rugby captain tips to make rugby leadership a breeze this season. Inspired by ‘Extreme Ownership’.

muscle cramp rugby
Tim Howard

How to avoid muscle cramping in rugby games

Cramps are common to see rugby grounds. But all too often the call from the sidelines is “get him some water”. Wrong. Today we learn how to avoid muscle cramping in Rugby and focus on making your game better than ever.

lineout jumpers lifters workout
Training Team

Gym workout for lineout jumpers who also lift

In the past 10 years, lifting in lineouts has become a required skill for both traditional lifters and now jumpers as well. This workout is designed to give you the strength and endurance to lift and jump effectively at lineout time.

rugby day nutrition guide
Training Team

Rugby day nutrition guide (carbohydrate adjusted)

What should rugby players eat before a rugby game? We examine pre-game and game day nutrition for rugby players including full meal plans for Saturday – this guide assumes that you are a carbohydrate-adjusted player as opposed to fat-adjusted.

breaking the gain line in rugby
Training Team

3 steps to breaking the gain line in rugby

How do you get your team across the gain line in rugby? The key is to know contact is imminent and to get into the right body position early. There are three steps to breaking the gainline, here’s how to do it.

bear complex - the single bar strength workout
Training Team

Bear Complex – single bar rugby strength workout

Looking for ways to get both strong and fit during pre-season? Try the bear complex. It’s a single-bar strength workout that works on power and conditioning for your entire body. The Bear Complex is absolutely ideal for rugby players!

rugby training drills from the Ohio Aviators
Training Team

Rugby training drills from the Ohio Aviators

Sadly, ProRugby fell apart last year. But one of the lasting memories we have of the period is the Ohio Aviators. Here are five rugby training drills they put together that your rugby team can use in its training.

rugby diet chipotle
Tim Howard

What rugby players should eat at Chipotle

Nutrition is becoming an increasingly important part of creating the modern rugby player.
Here’s what rugby players should eat at Chipotle both on off days and days when you have rugby training. Use it for your game day nutrition plan too!

get strong ruggers big will take care of itself
Training Team

Get strong ruggers, big will take care of itself

Should rugby players lift for size, strength or both? In this article, we lay out the case for rugby players training to get stronger rather than bigger. The recommendation is underpinned by the fact that professional rugby players are getting much leaner.

stretch or mobilize for rugby
Training Team

Should rugby players stretch or mobilize?

Should rugby players stretch or mobilize? Rugby stretches are good for warm ups, cool downs and halftime. You can mobilize too, here are the pros and cons of stretching Vs mobilizing. Always seek the advice of your trainer to guarantee you’re choosing correctly.

beep test variations rugby fitness
Training Team

Get rugby fit with these beep test variations

Beep testing is usually used to test Vo2 Max in athletes, so it’s not typically a training methodology. But pushing your Vo2 Max is also a great way to get fitter. Get rugby-fit by implementing these beep test variations.

rugby tour
Training Team

10 things you absolutely MUST take on rugby tour

If you’ve never been on rugby tour before, you’re in for a treat. Rugby tour is just about the most fun you can have in a week or even a weekend. Here’s what you need to take with you on rugby tour to make it successful.

precautions before playing rugby
Training Team

Six precautions before you start playing rugby

In rugby circles, safety has become a huge concern in recent years. To keep you on the rugby field, here are six precautions before you start playing rugby. Consider taking this advice even before you show up to your first rugby practice.

rugby 7s possession
Jacob Liberman

Analyzing time of possession in Rugby 7s

How does possession impact gameplay and strategy in rugby 7s? Jacob Liberman examines the importance of possession in rugby sevens. Hint: having the ball might not be as important as you think on the rugby 7s field.

nz rugby guidance on supplements
Tim Howard

NZ Rugby’s guidance on nutritional supplements

What is NZ Rugby’s position on the use of nutritional supplements by young players? We break down their position paper on supplement usage. Complete with the guidance, and a commentary from our product team clarifying the advice.

beets for a rugby player's diet
Training Team

How beets can benefit rugby players

Beets should be included in every rugby player’s diet. This article explains how beets can benefit rugby players for endurance and circulation. They’re an excellent way to balance the macronutrient content of your pre-game rugby diet.

lean out rugby
Training Team

How to lean-out for rugby season

Rugby players are getting bigger and leaner. How do you lean out for rugby season? Here’s how to get lean by changing your diet, training and sleep. You’ll still be able to go to rugby training. In fact, you might even find performance benefits to this program.

the rectangle flanker cardio program
Training Team

The Rectangle – flanker cardio program

Increase your Vo2 max threshold and your ability to replicate bursts of high-intensity with the help of our cardio program for rugby flankers. It includes a 40min program to develop a position-specific cardio capacity for flankers and #8s.

all blacks diet
Training Team

The All Blacks’ world cup winning diet

What did the All Blacks eat at the 2015 world cup? We break down what has been publicly said about the All Blacks’ diet and how it has changed to a lower-carb macronutrient count over the past few decades.

rugby leg workout for power
Training Team

The best rugby leg workout for power

Everybody wants a workout program to gives them rugby legs. Today, we bring you the best rugby leg workout for gains in strength and lower body power. You’ll be doing plenty of squats, but also pairing these with explosion plyometric exercises.

rowing best cardio training for rugby
Training Team

Rowing is the best cardio training for rugby

IOO rowing is the best cardio training for rugby players. Every rugger can follow these rowing programs and develop their cardio base this off-season. It’s a great way to build your cardio capacity without putting pressure on your joints.

breakdown poaching exercises
Tim Howard

Three exercises to master breakdown poaching

How do you steal more ball at the breakdown? Having low body height is important. So today we’ll examine three exercises that can help you master breakdown poaching by giving you a stronger lower and more powerful base.

cardio training start cardio
Training Team

Why rugby training should start with cardio

Why should rugby training start with cardio? Cardio puts everyone in the mood for rugby, gets the heart rate up and helps guarantee a minimum fitness standard. So we recommend that if you’re a rugby coach, start your team’s training sessions with 20mins of cardio!

flanker running lines
Training Team

Flanker running lines from ruck to ruck

Are you learning to play flanker in rugby? Awesome! You’ll love it. The most important thing to know is how to move around the rugby field from one ruck to another. These are called your ‘running lines’ and they’re critical for flankers to understand.

Rugby Vs football differences
Tim Howard

Rugby v Football – the 4 main differences

It shouldn’t be hard to spot the differences between rugby and football. But some of those difference are much more obvious and consequential than others. This article addresses the 4 main differences between rugby and (American) football, so you’ll be prepared for your first practice!

Learn how to play rugby

Can’t find what you’re looking for? Don’t forget, some of the best content on ruckscience.com is available for free in the programs section of our website. There, you’ll find dozens of eBooks that can help you in your life-long journey to learn rugby. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re coming from a point of significant knowledge or whether you’ve only just started learning how to play rugby.

Still can’t find the right rugby blog?

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