Every rugby player will need a good level of strength and muscular endurance for cross-pitch running, pushing in scrums, and for tackling and blocking. Explosive power and speed are also required to overcome inertia, and to accelerate quickly for short powerful sprints, fast break-aways and for exploding through a tackle.
But it is simply not enough to be physically fit. Being mentally astute and technically skilled are also highly valuable and beneficial traits for a rugby player. Training, therefore, should not only focus on physical development but also on the skills needed to be an effective member of your rugby team.
So, what does rugby training involve?
At the local/amateur level, rugby players may typically train 2-4 times per week. At the professional level, players are training up to 6 days per week, and sometimes twice per day. Training sessions throughout the week will include strength training in the gym, fitness and conditioning, skill, and tactical development, as well as match simulation.
Preventing rugby injuries
Unfortunately, there is no solution to fully mitigate the risk of injury during rugby, however there are a few preventative measures that can be implemented to support the player during training and on match day.
Do the training
This will not only physically prepare you, but it will also mentally prepare you for some of the scenarios that will happen during a rugby match. Having strong and mobile joints and muscles before you start is a sure-fire way to help your body cope with the stress of the game.
Even the strongest of players need to wear protective gear. Players should consider their choice of footwear, headwear, and mouthguards to provide the correct level of support and protection. Check your equipment regularly and at signs of wear, replace them as soon as possible.
Players may even consider taping or bracing around vulnerable areas such as joints to provide a little extra support both in training and on game day.
Know your limits
It’s important that you play to your strengths but also equally, it is important to know your weaknesses and limits and play within those, both for your safety and perhaps for others’ too. If you feel excessively sore or are experiencing pain and discomfort that you think could be an injury, stop and get a proper assessment by your team, a doctor, a physiotherapist, or osteopath. From there they will be able to advise your next steps. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Follow the rules
Rugby is an incredibly physical sport which can and does lead to serious injuries. Stick to the rules and practice proper technique during training and on match day – for your safety and for others’. And to protect the integrity and enjoyment of the game too.
Supercharge your recovery
Given the high prevalence of injuries (approximately 1 in 4 players will be injured in any given season), nutritional strategies that minimise the loss of training time due to injury are likely to determine performance success or failure and should be a key priority for all players and clubs.
Collagen supplements, are proving more and more to be highly effective in both prehab and rehab programs as well as part of a normal daily nutritional program for athletes of all abilities and across a wide variety of sports, including rugby.
Collagen is the primary structural protein that forms the structure of tendons, ligaments, muscles, and bone and therefore plays a critical role in the performance and recovery of these tissues. Adding more collagen to these tissues will ultimately make for a stronger and more injury resistant structure that will better withstand the stress of high intensity activity on and off the rugby pitch.
Not only that, with specific Bioactive Collagen Peptides® (like the ones we use here at U Perform), we can not only add more collagen into the mix by ingesting tasty supplements, but in doing so we can also kickstart the body’s own natural production of collagen again! With clinical studies showing up to a 65% improvement in just 56 days.
Despite losses due to age, physical activity, or injury, we can see an overall significant net gain in available collagen to support the recovery and adaptation of key structural tissues in the human body.
Maximising the time spent training, while also minimising the time lost to injury, is the number one goal here at U Perform. TENDOFORTE® Bioactive Collagen Peptides® featured in our signature Active Collagen gels are being widely used for the prevention and treatment of injury are proving more and more to be highly effective, as collagen supports the health, function, and recovery of soft tissue in both prehab and rehab programmes.
Due to the explosive and multi-directional nature of rugby training and matches, connective tissues like ligaments and tendons, can come under a significant amount of stress and strain which can cause damage, inflammation and in worst cases, lead to injury, placing you back on the bench and no longer able to train and play to the same level, if at all.
Where it was once thought that tendon injuries were caused primarily by inflammation, evidence is now pointing towards that fact that tendon injuries are likely more characterised by collagen fibre degeneration and the ineffectual activity of calf muscles such as the soleus and gastrocnemius.
In the case of rugby, all the above are true, but also sudden changes in directions as well as blunt force trauma from collisions can all lead to similar injury outcomes.
Because of a relatively limited blood supply tendon and ligament injuries are slow to recover and disrupt training with several personal, competitive, and financial consequences to the high-performance athlete or the exercise enthusiast.
Ongoing research evidence and clinical studies are continually demonstrating the efficacy and value of adding TENDOFORTE® Bioactive Collagen Peptides® to a daily nutritional program.
For example, one study by the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) examined the benefits of TENDOFORTE® over a period of 6 months. The participants were 20 runners with long-term symptoms of chronic Achilles tendinopathy, not responding to any traditional therapies, and being unable to train.
Within 3 months, 12 out of 20 participants were able to return to running after starting a therapy with a daily intake of 5g of TENDOFORTE®. What’s more, the benefits continued, and more runners returned to training in the following 3 months.
High performing tendons and ligaments combine strength and flexibility. U Perform TENDOFORTE® collagen fibres give them the right elasticity for optimal function and performance.
Active Collagen is the UK's No.1 sports recovery supplement and is the product of choice for rugby players and clubs looking to enhance injury prevention and recovery strategies. Try Active Collagen today and improve your rugby performance!
As the primary structural protein in the human body (over a third of total body protein), collagen plays a vital role in the maintenance and development of almost all the physical structures of the body, including our muscles.
Up to 10% of muscle is formed of collagen fibres. The collagen fibres are there to give muscles the strength and elasticity they need to perform their function under load without becoming injured. As we age and as our level of activity increases, the turnover of collagen increases which is why supplementing with a high-quality collagen supplement is critically important to maintain the health and function of our muscles.
The latest innovation in collagen technology, BODYBALANCE® is a brand-new muscle specific Performance Peptide®. BODYBALANCE® has a multi-factorial effect on body composition and the maintenance and development of muscle mass.
In any rugby training session, match, or when we are in the gym performing strength building exercises, we create muscle damage and inflammation to stimulate adaptation, growth, and repair.
This muscle damage, in the form of ‘micro-tears’ is inevitable and is an essential part of the training process. How we respond to that damage will ultimately determine the gains we make because of the training we do; either enhancing performance or in some cases reduce performance if our body cannot adequately recover and repair.
Outside of adequate programming, rest time, quality hydration and sleep, your nutrition is crucial as it is from food and supplements that the body receives the nutrients it needs to fulfil that repair and adaptation process.
What does the science say about Active Whey & Collagen?
Supplementing with a high-quality recovery protein source such as U Perform’s Active Whey & Collagen post-workout, meets this need conveniently and cost-effectively. Alongside whey protein, collagen supplementation not only provides a high-quality source of Essential Amino Acids, but targeted Bioactive Collagen Peptides® have been proven to improve the recovery of muscle tissue, to increase their strength and make them more resistant to injury.
Furthermore, several randomised, placebo controlled. double blinded studies have demonstrated the efficacy and potential of the daily intake of 15g of BODYBALANCE® in combination with resistance training showing increases in muscle size, strength, decrease in waist circumference and, improved muscle recovery times. Proving that nutritional supplements like Active Whey & Collagen are valuable additions to any rugby player’s routine.
Studies have been carried out in both men and women of varying age ranges and levels of activity; with all showing statistically significant results in as little as 12 weeks (15g daily serving BODYBALANCE® in combination with physical exercise).
Active Whey & Collagen is available in 2 great tasting flavours, and is ready to mix with water or milk - perfect for after your rugby training session or match. Discover more about the amazing benefits of Active Whey & Collagen by clicking here.
The cartilage in our joints effectively act as shock absorbers taking on the impact from running, tackling, and changing direction during a training session or game. Maintaining the integrity and mobility of your joints and articular surfaces such as hyaline cartilage is crucial for anyone looking to improve their rugby performance, reduce the risk of injury and stay in the game for longer.
70% of articular cartilage is made up of collagen protein; Type II to be more specific. The high intensity and high impact demands of rugby training and matches will put pressure on joints and bones which may lead to activity related pain, impaired mobility, and even chronic injuries that can put you out of the game and on the side-lines.
Active Sport Collagen is an innovative and cost-effective product with a unique formulation of Type II optimised FORTIGEL® Bioactive Collagen Peptides®, clinically proven to activate the growth of new cartilage and protect the integrity of existing cartilage.
Not only does this ensure you get a consistent supply of high-quality collagen peptides, but it is also highly effective as it directly stimulates specific collagen producing cells in the cartilage tissue itself, helping to ease joint discomfort, and keep joints moving smoother for longer.
But what does the science say about Active Sport Collagen?
The effectiveness of FORTIGEL®, the collagen peptides used in the product formulation has been scientifically proven in numerous studies and according to published research, the ingestion of FORTIGEL® collagen peptides stimulate a significant increase of cartilage tissue metabolism, against placebo.
One study, carried out by Harvard University, investigated the long-term effect of FORTIGEL® treatment on the condition of cartilage in individuals with knee osteoarthritis, a common condition that can affect the ability for us to stay in the game as we get older.
The analysis of the final cartilage scans revealed a statistically significant increase in proteoglycan density in the medial and lateral tibial regions of the FORTIGEL® treated subjects compared to the placebo group.
Studies on FORTIGEL® collagen peptides have been carried out in various groups and looking at a variety of joint disorders including osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. They all show significant and positive results with just 5-10g per day and with results in as little as 12 weeks.
Taking Active Sport Collagen is a convenient way to kick start your collagen supplement routine and to optimise your joint health - try it today - SEE and FEEL the difference for yourself!