Benefits of Playing Rugby

13th August 2019
Rugby is a sport that's becoming increasingly popular. In the following article, we'll take the opportunity to review the benefits of this discipline.

Playing rugby is especially popular in countries such as France, South Africa, England or Australia, among many others. As a physical activity, it’s hard, very physically demanding and extremely fun. On top of that, this sport brings incredible benefits. Get ready to know all about this sport.

It’s a team sport with a clear and simple goal: to get the ball over the opponent’s goal line. Soccer is one of the most popular sports in many countries. However, unlike soccer, in rugby, you’re allowed to throw the ball with your hands and feet.

This makes it a really fun activity, in which 15 players (per team) face each other to score the most points.

Anyone, no matter their physical condition, can play rugby. Still, the reality is that it’s a very demanding sport, both physically and mentally, so it needs to be practiced by fit athletes.

On the other hand, it’s a sport that can be practiced by professionals and amateurs. In both cases, the health benefits are palpable.

One of the most striking aspects is the force used in the game during attacks, defenses, advances and game transitions. However, to minimize the risk of injury and protect yourself, there are elements such as the helmet to protect the head, ears, shoulders, clavicle, and teeth.

Benefits of playing rugby

The benefits of rugby are many and varied, ranging from improving mental health to enhancing the physical state and social life. Next, we’ll review them:

1. Improves cardiovascular health

Among other benefits, rugby provides the perfect cardiovascular workout. It allows you to maintain and even lose weight, keep fit and look good. Running, dodging rivals or throwing the ball is equal to a fantastic exercise that increases your cardiovascular capacity. This means that the heart and lungs function more efficiently and there’s an improvement in general health.

playing rugby benefits

2. Increased strength and agility

Another great benefit is the fact that rugby is a great sport for increasing the strength of the upper body. This is because having strong arms is necessary to hold your ground when facing your opponents and throwing the ball.

In addition, it also develops the muscles of the legs. In order to run and to dribble, it’s necessary to have the lower part of the body well-trained. Don’t forget that agility in rugby is key since the feet and hands make sudden changes of direction and rhythm.

3. Less stress and more self-esteem

As with other sports, rugby is fantastic for eliminating accumulated stress. It allows you to distract yourself and keep your mind busy, effectively eliminating frustrations.

At the same time, practicing this sport releases endorphins, which are hormones of well-being caused by physical exercise. Endorphins play a huge part in eliminating stress.

Also, studies have shown that practicing this team sport gives players the opportunity to boost their self-esteem.

4. Fosters discipline

Rugby is one of the sports in which discipline, control, and respect for others are more important. These qualities are equally important outside the playing fields.

And, as a sport, rugby can develop key mental skills of self-control and discipline for the future of athletes. Even as amateurs, teams develop high discipline and a deep sense of responsibility.

rugby challenges and benefits

5. Work team spirit playing rugby

Another reason why athletes choose to play rugby is the social aspect and the friends they can make while practicing this sport. As an activity, it fosters courage, teamwork, and unity.

Practicing a team sport significantly improves the way an athlete reacts to life in general. It’s a great way for an athlete to develop fine communication skills with their teammates due to the many interactions during the match and the training. Plus, the struggle for a common goal promotes team spirit among the participants.

As you can see, the benefits of playing rugby are many and varied. However, it’s important to remember that it’s necessary to stretch the muscles before and after each workout. Also, always wear protective gear in order to minimize the risk of injury. Now that you know their strengths, do you dare to try out this discipline?

  • Duthie, G. M. (2006). A framework for the physical development of elite rugby union players. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance. https://doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.1.1.2
  • Tavares, F., Smith, T. B., & Driller, M. (2017, August 1). Fatigue and Recovery in Rugby: A Review. Sports Medicine. Springer International Publishing. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-017-0679-1
  • Corcoran, G. (2016). Strenght Training for Rugby Union: The General Preparation Phase. Journal of Australian Strength and Conditioning Strength, 24((1)), 52–61.