Published On: Mon, Aug 29th, 2016

Why You Should Not Train As A Bodybuilder When You Prepare For Rugby

There are so many aspiring rugby players out there that make the huge mistake of training as they are a bodybuilder. This is basically a progression that seems normal. You start lifting some weights in order to improve your rugby game. Results appear and then you would want to see more results in the future. Sooner or later you find yourself training like a hardcore bodybuilder and your rugby game is damaged. This is something that happens way more often than what many think, according to rugby fan Brendan Triplett. If you want to understand more about this, here is why you should never train as a bodybuilder when you play rugby.

The Bodybuilding Split Problem

A traditional bodybuilding split will have the athlete train the main muscle group separately, usually once per week. As you play rugby, this will not help you out. Maximum force does not come when you use only the major muscle group. It appears when you use most of the body. This practically means that you do have to build muscle but they have to be built based on compound lifts. The traditional bodybuilding split is going to drastically affect you because the smaller muscles will not become strong enough to help you in a rugby environment.

The Tempo Problem

Your muscles include 2 main fiber types:

  • Slow Twitch – Type 1
  • Fast Twitch – Type 2
 2013 All Florida Day Rugby Tournament. photo Brian C. Cole

2013 All Florida Day Rugby Tournament. photo Brian C. Cole

Most of the bodybuilders are going to train the type 1 fibers with the use of tension. Weights are basically lifted slowly. This is a huge problem for a rugby player. It leads towards lifting weights that are too slow and the muscle that is put on the body will basically be completely useless when you play the game. A rugby player that puts on a lot of muscle through bodybuilding training means that movement is going to be a lot slower.

The Isolation Problem

We hinted at this in the first thing that we said. An isolation lift will have one muscle trained in one movement. That is quite negative for the rugby player. It is really important to train all the muscles of the body.

Instead of focusing on individual muscle training, the rugby player has to train a complex movement. That is why the compound lifts are a lot better. It is possible to isolate a body side. Targeting anti-rotation core helps in being stronger and being better prepared for injuries. However, when just one muscle is trained, there is a pretty good possibility that an injury is going to happen.

The Machine Problem

Last but not least, we have to highlight that rugby is really dynamic as a sport. You have millions of different movements that you will perform in a single game. You cannot train these but you have to be ready to deal with them. The machines that are used in bodybuilding training are simply not suitable for a rugby player.

The best example is the common bench press. The chest press machine will make you push weights based on one pre-programmed path. When you use the dumbbells, the stabilizing muscles will be involved. This already makes you better prepared for various different situations.

Guest Author: Lolita Di

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