“As rugby is a positional field sport, we need to work all three planes of motion and use key movement patterns,” says Third Space elite PT Luke Worthington.
“The three planes of motion are: sagittal (forward and back), frontal (side to side), and transverse (rotational).
“Here we will mainly focus on the lower body, as rugby players rarely work overhead.”
WARM-UP: Mobility and activation
Spend 60 secs on each drill
- Spiderman Stretch
- Forward Lunge with Hip Flexor Stretch
- High Knee to Cossack Squat
PART 1: Strength
- Complete the exercises as a continuous circuit, with minimal rest between exercises.
- Do 8-10 reps for each and take 2 mins rest before completing the circuit 1 or 2 more times.
2a. Double Kettlebell Goblet Squat
- Begin by standing with your feet just wider than shoulder-width apart.
- Hold the kettlebells in the racked position at shoulder height.
- As you squat down, keep your elbows inside the line of your knees, and the heels of your feet flat on the ground.
- Go as low as you can, then come back up, pushing through your heels.
- Keep your movements measured and your abs tensed as you move.
2b. KB Romanian Deadlift
- Stand with feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart.
- Point toes outwards at an acute angle.
- Hold a kettlebell in each hand.
- Bend your knees slightly.
- Slowly descend the weights towards the floor as you bend your hips.
- Keep your chest high and look straight.
- When a stretch is felt, begin to extend your hips back to standing.
2c. KB Reverse Lunge
- Stand with your feet shoulder-distance apart, holding a kettlebell upside down in both hands.
- Step back on one leg, allow the knee to drop and stop just before it reaches the floor.
- Bring the leg back up and return to the starting position.
- Repeat on the other leg.
- Maintain core stability and upright posture throughout.
2d. KB Lateral Lunge
- Hold the kettlebell upside down in both hands, keeping it close to your chest.
- From a standing position, step out into a lateral lunge.
- Control the eccentric portion of the rep and ensure the unloaded leg stays straight.
- From the bottom of the rep, return all the way back up to standing.
2e. KB Single-Leg Romanian Deadlift
- Stand with feet close together and a kettlebell in your right hand.
- Plant your right foot down while slightly bending the knee.
- While keeping it straight, drive the left leg backwards until it’s parallel with the floor as you hinge at the hips and lower the kettlebell to the floor.
- Just before the kettlebell touches down, reverse the movement with control.
- Return your left leg to the starting position and repeat with the other side.
PART 2: Power
- Complete the exercises back-to-back without rest.
- Take 90 secs rest at the end of the circuit, then repeat 1 or 2 more times.
3a. 15m Push Sled
- Stay flat and low to the ground.
- Keep a straight back and strong, straight arms.
- Take long, powerful strides.
3b. Assault Bike x 60 secs
- Technique is secondary to lung-busting effort.
- Give it all you’ve got.
3c. 15m Push Sled
Photography: Jon Payne