What is this Rugby? And 5 suggested workouts from professionals

By PJ Chandra

“The ball can never be passed forwards but players can run forwards with the ball or kick the ball forward to chase it down. The opposing team needs to stop the attacking team by tackling and trying to retain the ball.” Thought I was talking about football? Nope! This is one of the many complicated rules of rugby, a sport founded 1823 in Warwickshire, England. The women’s rugby team here at AU is competitive, fierce, and a force to be reckoned with. 

On a personal level, people who mock and don’t take women’s sports serious cause they think they are “tough” have no idea what they’re talking about. My personal favorite sports to watch and gamble on are women’s soccer (favorite players are Team USA’s Sammy Mewis and Tobin Heath, and Team Netherland’s Vivianne Miedema) and women’s tennis (favorite players are Eugenie Bouchard, Maria Sharapova and Coco Gauff.) 

I caught up with Jessie Langley, the personal trainer of the women’s rugby team to get an inside look at how they workout. 

“Different teams have different protocols and have different ways that they want to approach and what they want to focus on,” Jessie explained. 

“It really comes down to what they’re biggest goals are, and how motivated the individual athletes are.”

While it is important to realize that there are certainly different factors for everyone wants to approach the idea of working out, studies say working out with peers and teammates makes one more motivated and focus more on themselves. 

Below are a list of five workouts that have been recommended and can help focus on different aspects of your body, including some of the rugby team’s favorites: 

 

  1. Calf (Gastrocnemius and Soleus)

    1. The Exercise: Foam Roll!! When foam rolling your calves, make sure you have a full knee extension and roll from the heel all the way past the knee making sure you hit both sides. 

    2. Focus Group? Focuses on two separate muscles and is more commonly know as the calf muscles

  2. Single Arm Chest Press with varied leg positions

    1. The Exercise: Face away the wall and start with your legs together. Keep your posture upright and core tight. Step forward with your left foot. As you do, bring your right arm holding the band forward making a continuous in-and-out motion for twenty seconds. Switch and repeat.

    2. Equipment: Resistance Bands

    3. Focus Group: Deltoids

  3. Leg-Assisted Side Plank

    1. The Exercise: Assume a short side-plank position with your knees bent and pressed slightly forward. Brace your weight on your right arm. Raise your top leg so that it is parallel to the ground and maintain this position for thirty seconds and repeat.

    2. Equipment: None

    3. Focus Group: Activates your body’s lateral stability as you push up from one side to the other.

  4. Bench Press

    1. The Exercise: Lie on the bench with your eyes under the bar. Grab the bar with a medium grip-width (thumbs around the bar!) Unrack the bar by straightening your arms. Lower the bar to your mid-chest Press the bar back up until your arms are straight.

    2. Focus Group: Triceps brachii and pectoralis major with the anterior (front) deltoids, traps & back as secondary muscles used in the flat barbell bench press

  5. Russian Twists

    1. The Exercise: Lie down on the floor placing your feet either under something that will not move or by having a partner hold them. Your legs should be bent at the knees. Elevate your upper body so that it creates an imaginary V-shape with your thighs.

    2. Focus Group: Core muscles, primarily the obliques

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