Rugby demands a lot for the body. It is a high demand and high impact team sport. Historically it has been a sport dominated by males but as of late has picked up major interest by females. Statistically, 1 in 4 rugby players are likely to suffer an injury during a season.
Major risk factors include:
- Being a lower ranked team
- Tackling or being tackled
- Playing in the forwards
- Beginning of the season.
- Rugby injuries are reportedly three times higher than soccer
- Most injuries are experienced by 10–18-year-olds
- Adults aged 25-34 years old are also deemed to be of high risk
Players are most risk:
- Hookers & Flankers are most at risk followed by other forwards due to more involvement in the ruck
What kind of injuries occur?
- 40% are muscular strains or bruises, 30% are sprains (ligament damage) with the rest being dislocations, fractures, lacerations & overuse injuries
- Sprained ankles make up for 1 in 7 injuries
- 5-25% of injuries are head injuries including concussions (40% of head injuries)
- For ages 10-18 years 35% of injuries are fractures
Pre-season Conditioning & Injury Prevention
- With injuries being common early in the season, this highlights the importance of pre-season.
- A pre-season program should consist of strength and conditioning, aerobic capacity & skills. This allows the athlete to perform better on the pitch & have a lesser chance of injury.
- Players should be focusing on strength work for 2-4 months leading up to the first match of the season. This can able the player to maintain strength during the season allowing more time to focus on team work and skills.
- Strength training should consist of Deadlift, Squat, Bench press, bent over Row etc…Players needing any help with injuries or a strength & conditioning program should reach out to a coach or physiotherapist in perth.