Fitness Exercises for Rugby Players

Since its inception rugby has always been an extremely demanding game, where the players need optimum fitness to survive the time they spend in the middle.

After a core fitness regime, the players go through a vigorous weight training process which improve their strength and increases the body mass.


  • 1


    This is the exercise for the forwards, and needs to be performed in a pyramid style with 4 sets. The final set needs to contain 2-3 reps of maximum weight.

  • 2

    Side-Step Squats:

    This exercise is done to strengthen the groin and the inner quads, it is crucial for a powerful, quick side step. One thing that needs to be remembered is the players should avoid using heavy weights during this exercise to prevent muscle injuries. It is preferred to use light weights and then gradually build-up. 10-15 reps in three working sets are perfect with this exercise.

  • 3

    Dead lifts:

    This can be considered as the basic training for rugby players, as it strengthens the back and maintains core stability. It is recommended to do this exercise in four sets.

  • 4

    Power Cleans:

    This exercise helps in developing raw power which is most important for a rugby player. However, mastering this technique is not easy and therefore, it is recommended that the players start with light weights. For good power and muscular endurance 4 sets of 10-12 reps are enough.

  • 5

    Bench Press:

    Bench pressing can be considered as the mother of core trainings as it has uncountable benefits for athletes.

    This is an exercise for developing a strong upper body. Four sets are just about perfect. Rugby players need a strong upper body, as the tackling during a match can get nasty at times, resulting in rib and shoulder injuries.

  • 6

    Seated Military Press:

    For powerfully ruck, maul, scrummage and lift, a rugby player needs to have strong shoulders and this is the exercise which gets the job done. Military presses can be performed with 4 sets to a 2-3 rep final set.

  • 7


    Sprinting is an ultimate fitness technique, and since rugby players need to tackle and sprint left and right during a match, it is imperative for them to be trained in a fashion which guarantees a full strength sprint once the game begins.

  • 8

    Box Jumps:

    This exercise should be designed around five sets with one-minute rest between jumps. A player needs to jump over a set of ten hurdles.

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