Rugby Coaching Blog | Professional Rugby Advice & Coaching

Weight training for youngsters by David Clarke
January 19, 2010, 11:30 am
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby Fitness | Tags: , , , ,

When can a young player start weight training?

There is no definitive answer, just read the debate in “The Huddle”

I think we can all agree that any training should take place in a safe and supervised environment, but what about the nature of what, how much and for how long?

I am no gym bunny myself though I can admit to an unhealthy obsession with a Concept 2 rowing machine.

However I did find “Rocket Rugby” helpful in explaining some programmes to players who asked.

Better Rugby Coaching


1 Comment so far
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Please don’t perpetuate the myth, which was based on one study from the 1980s. This study has since been dicredited many times over.

There IS a definitive answer – When the person is old enough to follow instuctions to be able to carry out safe technique.

Please see the extract below taken from the BokSmart website.

Michael Posthumus BSc(MED)(HONS)

Physical conditioning programs designed to increase physical capacities of players are also an effective way to reduce injuries(8). In particular, injuries occurring in the contact situation may be decreased
through strength training. Therefore, rugby players of all levels should be encouraged to participate in
physical conditioning(2,8). There is a myth that prepubescent and adolescent players should avoid
resistance training because it will stunt growth. This myth is not supported by any scientific evidence and numerous medical, health and professional bodies advocate that there are advantages for youth engaging in resistance training providing the programme is properly designed and supervised with safe technique and no competition(8). In particular, resistance training has been shown to be the key in the
prevention of injury in youth and adolescent athletes. It may therefore be concluded that the
implementation of a properly designed resistance training program will not only give youth and senior rugby players a competitive advantage throughout their rugby careers, but also reduce the risk of sustaining an injury.

E. FORMAN, M. GAUDIOSE, L. MICHELI, M. NITKA, S. ROBERTS. Youth resistance training:
position statement paper and literature review. Strength Cond. J. 18(6):62 – 76. 1996.

Comment by Ruckoff

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