Rugby drills and training tips to improve fitness

For rugby players, a well-thought-out, well-balanced training regime is crucial, so let’s take a look at some tips that will help both coaches and players to get the edge on the field.

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Plan properly

This may sound silly, but a badly planned rugby training regime is as bad as not having one at all. There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to training or drills, so it is important for coaches to draw up a plan that caters to all types of player and works within the confines of the available space and equipment.

You can choose to opt for a really gruelling regime if playing in a more competitive league; alternatively, you can simply ensure that your drills keep players fit and ready for the on-field action.

Interval training is a great option for rugby drills. You will find plenty of ideas from resources such as, or you can try some of the following:

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Drills for forwards

Running is great training for forwards. Simply running the full pitch, back half-way and then walking to the try line and repeating the exercise offers a great workout. It also helps players to build up the stamina for longer bursts of speed.

For a more physical drill, pair up forwards and get them to run in opposite directions and then back into a scrum or wrestle on the ground. Repeat this exercise five times with a short break between each run.

Drills for backs

Use the same system as the run for the forwards but don’t allow any walking. Players must sprint between points and can have a slightly longer rest between each run. To mix things up a bit, you can chart a course rather than having them run in straight lines.

Technically, backs do not need to be as fit as forwards. While the run and scrum drill is a good one for all players, other fitness and agility building drills may be better suited here. Dodge ball will build reflexes, while passing drills and kicking exercises should be incorporated to give the forwards a better all-round grounding.

For all positions, any drills that focus on the sport being a multi-directional one are a good choice, as are those that build stamina and agility.


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