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!
Rugby is a complex sport played by athletes with a huge variety of different skill and fitness levels. Most players learn rugby from coaches and other players around them. But elite level rugby coaches don’t just fall out of the sky. Our blog is dedicated to giving all ruggers access to the best free training, diet and skill-based resources.
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.
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.
You can’t get to the gym because let’s face it, juggling life and training for rugby is tough. Powerlifting champ Pat Dale explains that you can still get a lot of work done at home, even if you’re training in the garden.
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!
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 IF during the rugby season.
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.
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.
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.
How do you keep making progress in the gym and on the rugby field? The kind of training you’re doing is pretty damn important! Today Pat Dale explains how to keep improving in the gym so you keep getting better on the rugby field too.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
It’s not always possible to get to the gym. Sometimes you’re babysitting. Here’s a formula for improving your flexibility while watching TV with the kids.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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!
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!
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.
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.
If you MUST train for rugby despite being injured, these strategies may allow you to exercise without making your existing problems worse.
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!!
How can you modify the most common gym exercises to make them more rugby-specific? As a rugby player, it can be frustrating training at crossfit and other gyms. Here’s how to tweak their programs to make them work for you.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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!!!).
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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. The recent news about high-profile ex-players taking their lives should make us think about what we can do for our mates.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
“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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!!
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.
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!).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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!!!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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’.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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!
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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!
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