The Best Gym Equipment For Rugby Training
Six pieces of home gym equipment every rugby player needs
Tackles, sprints and take downs – rugby isn’t just a game, it’s a brutal mesh of grit, strength and determination. So, when it comes to training, you need to make sure your body is just as tough as your mindset.
And while practising out on the field is key, putting the hours in at the gym is just as important for achieving the true muscle mass and density required to win.
Ready to raise your game?
In honour of the just finished Six Nations, we’ve put together six essential pieces of kit every rugby player needs to be their best.
The lesser-known squat within the squat family, the sissy squat is one of the best exercises you can do to build those teardrop thighs that all world-class players possess.
The Sissy Squat is one of the most intense exercises you can do on your quads and your hip flexors – allowing you to build up some real muscle mass.
The word “sissy” in this instance refers to the Greek legend King Sisyphus who, after being condemned to the lowest part of the underworld following numerous crimes, was given the back-breaking punishment of getting a large stone to the top of the highest mountain. The task, was impossible. Every time he got close to the top, the stone would roll back down the side of the mountain and he’d have to start again.
Rolling a big rock up and down a massive hill might not be what you aspire to do in life but whenever Sisyphus is depicted, there’s always one thing that’s district – his huge, bulging thighs. And after training to failure for so long, it’s hardly a surprise.
Sissy squat benches are a rare gym gem but they make life so much easier when really building up your thighs – vital for resisting tackles, speed gains and pure power.
Gone are the days of trying to cling to the side of the squat rack as you try and bend backwards. The Mirafit Sissy Squat Bench holds you in place as you squat, allowing you to really push your weight back and then pull yourself up with nothing but your quads, hip flexors and lower core.
It’s a demon exercise that takes both mental and physical preparation and is excellent for increasing your strength and power in games tenfold. And if you really want to feel some pain, add in a loaded barbell – or a large rock – depending on how legendary you’re feeling… You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.
2) Squat Rack
Squats are the king of muscle building exercises. Getting a squat rack in your life will open up a world of strength development as well as hypertrophy.
As a compound exercise, squats are great for getting more bang for your buck as they target so many areas in one go. They are also much more likely to help stimulate the production of muscle building hormones. This means more gains and denser muscles that are fueled with raw power.
The variety of squats that you can do to target different areas makes squat rack training really versatile too. Low bar squats target your posterior chain and push the weight back so it’s not over your knees so much – ideal if you’re rehabilitating an injury – whereas front bar squats target your quads.
Change up your stance to develop mobility as well as strength and endurance.
Box squats are also perfect for targeting your weak points and pushing your strength to the next level – something that is difficult to do out on the field. Combine your squat rack with a Mirafit Squat Box to up the level.
With safety bars to catch the barbell when training to failure mean you can train without a partner and not have to worry about the bar falling on you. Additionally, squat racks can also be used to push those gains as you can load the bar without worrying about having to lift the whole bar over your head to your shoulders.
Place the barbell lower down and you have a base for Bulgarian split squats – great training for lunging into a tackle as well as fast sprints. Or, use some weight plates to perform deficit deadlifts for targeting your hamstrings and lower back – ideal for developing your kicks, sprints and pushing power. You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.
3) Wall Ball
Passes, throws and rips can be refined out on the field. But when it comes to developing pure throwing power, there’s nothing better than a Mirafit Wall Ball. Weighted, stitched and primed to take your upper body conditioning to the next level, these simple yet versatile pieces of kit can really up your venom.
They can be chest-passed, grabbed, slammed and thrown to really target all your playing muscles in one go. Ideal for breaking free from the gym machines and getting real world development, both in and out the gym.
Not just great for your arms and shoulders, wall balls target your core with momentum, allowing you to push harder, resist tackles and propel yourself forward. You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.
When it comes to breaking away from a group tackle, being able to mimic that at the gym – as best as possible – is going to really give you the advantage.
Sleds will not only push your BPM up to max level, but they focus on developing your pushing and pulling power – engaging your full front and back as you train.
Load with up to 200kg for maximum exertion and conditioning for the pitch. One of the key aspects of the Mirafit M3 Weight Sled is that it can used pretty much anywhere – at the gym or on the field, adding another facet to your training. It’s easily portable – just load up with weights, clip on the harness and go. You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.
5) Battle Ropes
Now for the endurance work. Battle ropes are another really versatile training tool. Fit them in with your high intensity workouts for a high heart rate and muscles that can go for longer. Waves and slams condition your core, and just 10 minutes of continuous training with these weighted ropes can really help you develop the endurance needed to help you stay at 100% .
Combine a Mirafit Battle Rope with sprints for a workout you’ll never forget. Tighten your grip strength, fuel your muscles and get your heart pounding. You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.
Rugby isn’t just about strength and speed. It’s about combining the two. Being able to lift a large amount weight – quickly – is what’s going to clinch you the game. This is about developing your power and explosivity. And there’s nothing that’s going to do this more than plyometrics. Plyo boxes come in a range of heights and the Mirafit Stackable Plyo Boxes can be piled up for maximum intensity – a massive plus point about these is that they don’t damage hurt your shins if you miss.
As well as helping you to launch yourself up, they allow you to develop your explosivity – for quick, powerful sprints from standing, changing direction and pushing your weight in for tackles. Plyo boxes can also be used for incline and decline work – whether that’s lunges, press ups or jumping squats – all great for loading up your muscles with weight for an intense training session, that doesn’t leave you crawling on the floor all week.
Training both on and off the field is the best way to ensure your strength, speed and power match your technique and form. Not only that, but it’s a great way to manage your muscle gains so you can really raise your game. Vary your routines to avoid the fitness plateau, rehabilitate any long lasting injuries and work on your weaknesses to optimise your time spent on the pitch. You can purchase from MIRAFIT here.