Resistance Training Strength Power by MikeJenny


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									                                      Recommended Lifting Program

NOTE: This program requires a solid basis of strength in all main body parts. This could
take anywhere from 1 to 4 weeks depending on your experience. Phase one will focus on
Hypertrophy, which will help build initial strength and endurance. Then move on to
a phase of 2 to 6 weeks of strength focus with explosiveness mixed in. Finally you will
move on to the program below depending on your position.

Position                         % Strength              % Hypertrophy               % Explosiveness        Ratio

Backs (not Centers)                  30%                         20%                      50%
Backrow and Centers                  30%                         30%                      40%
Props and Locks                      35%                         40%                      25%
Hookers                              35%                         30%                      35%


                                               Backrow and Centers

   Week                       Legs       Shoulders       Chest     Mid/Up Back & Combo          Hips/Low Back

     1                          S            E             S                     E                      H
     2                          E            H             E                     H                      S
     3                          H            S             H                     S                      E
     4                                                 lady's choice. See other options. :)

* out of ten you will notice 3 (S), 3 (H) and 4 (E) workouts. Hence the 3:3:4 ratio.

     Component                              Sets                       Reps

         Strength                          6 to 11                     9 to 1

     Hypertrophy                           4 to 6                      8 to 15

  Explosiveness *                          4 to 6                      7 to 3

    Combinations                           2 to 4                      3 to 5

             * warm up with a few strength sets, progressively adding weight, then drop the weight
             and get explosive. Add weight until you can't explode well. (I only do 1-2 warm up sets)
                                                  Primary Lifts

1. Legs

Squats        parallel                Lunges       forward                     Step Ups      body weight
              half                                 backward                                  bar/ db
              quarter                              walking
              front                                overhead                    Calf raises
              overhead                Leg Press                                Smith/Hack Machine

2. Chest

Bench         flat                    Push-ups     variations     fingertips   wide hands
              incline                                             knuckles     clapping
              decline                                             close in     on knees for more reps

3. Hips/Low Back

Deadlift      standard                Good Mornings                            Hyperextensions             Supermans
              Romanian                glute-ham raises                         Dumbell swings

4. Mid/Upper Back

Cleans        hang                    Pullovers    bent-arm                    Rows          Bent          bar
              power                                straight-arm                              Seated        single arm db
              & jerk

Split jerks                           Pull-ups & positive                      High pulls
                                      Chin-ups negative

5. Shoulders

Press         dumbells                DB raise     lat                         Rotator Cuff internal/external
              military                             anterior                                  swords/seatbelts
              push                                 posterior                                 empty cans

6. Combination Lifts

Countless possibilities- see other literature


neck          core           wrist    abdominals                  small muscles (bicep/tricep)
Resistance Training: Strength & Power
Strength is the ability of the muscle to exert a force against a load. Within the game of rugby union, different
types of strength are required, from relatively static strength in the scrum, or in mauls, to dynamic strength in
the tackle, or when breaking a tackle. Strength is also the pre-cursor to power. This is best described as the
ability to exert a large force quickly (i.e. force times the velocity of movement or the product of strength x
speed: weight per repetition x speed of movement).

Strength is important in rugby to:

    •    Aid in the prevention of contact and non-contact injuries.
    •    Enhance performance by allowing the more forceful application of skills.
    •    Act as a basis for long-term power development.

The development of strength and power is a long-term process, and initially requires the development of a
strength base.
Click here to look at the perfect structure of a training year.
These techniques should then be taken and practised (within the guidelines provided and with expert
supervision) to achieve the following:

    •    1. Learning of correct techniques.
    •    2. To begin to increase muscle mass.
    •    3. To begin to increase basic strength in major muscle groups.
    •    4. To identify and strengthen common and potential muscular injury sites.

The above should all be achieved prior to, and during, the early pre-season phase of training. This is the
time for strength base development.

Structure of a training year

This training phase will progress into power training as the pre-season develops. With modern rugby players
being larger, stronger and more powerful, one needs such training in order to maintain pace with, and
improve upon, performances of the opposition.
Resistance training exercises have been demonstrated to increase not only speed and power, but also the
contractile speed of the muscle and the flexibility about particular joints (especially when combined with the
flexibility work prescribed).

For a look at some basic stretching exercises, click here.

The result is a stronger and faster athlete, a concept that is obviously beneficial in the explosive, collision
based, power oriented sport of rugby union, whatever position you play in.
Strength programmes should be designed to be positionally specific, and use a combination of Olympic,
power and bodybuilding lifts to develop the individual so as to meet the strength demands placed upon the
player in a specific position. As rugby is a total body sport, and involves few movements that isolate single
joints, strength training sessions should focus upon multiple joint lifts that stress the entire body, not focus
upon individual body-parts. Two to 3 sessions of such sessions per week also allows every body-part to
receive 2-3 quality workouts per week rather than one.

At the heart of any good resistance training programme is strength at the core of the body.
Core Stability training.
This will allow a player to develop a foundational platform about which body movements can occur. This is
vital in both making the player more effective in play, and also for reducing the incidence of injury.
Machines or freeweights:
Weight training machines have the advantage of allowing the player to be able to train without a spotter in
assistance (if a training partner is not available). As they control the range of movement, they are also
relatively safe. However, The fact that they control the movement of the exercise means that machines
eliminate any training of the stabiliser muscles acting around a joint in a lift. The training of such muscles is
very important, as if the co-ordination of such muscles, which is also developed from free-weight work.
Therefore, wherever possible, your training should be based around free-weight lifts rather than using
machines or fixed weight options.
Click here to look at Freeweight and Power exercises.

Strength and power is a changeable element of your physical conditioning which can greatly
determine the success of a modern rugby player!

Resistance Training Guidelines

1. Control the weight, do not let it control you. Follow the guidelines for lowering and raising etc. as detailed.
However, remember that in rapid lowering movements you still need to be moving in a controlled fashion.

2. Make sure that you are familiar with the correct technique for a lift. Most injuries occur because people lift
weights that are too heavy for them, and/ or they use incorrect technique. Ego’s in the gym do not improve
performance, therefore do not attempt to lift weights to impress others, stick to your own limits. Become
familiar with techniques by starting to lift with light weights. If in doubt, seek the advice of a qualified

3. Before you attempt any lift, always check that the equipment you are using is fully functional, and not
damaged in any way. Always make sure that the plates on a dumbbell / barbell are secured with a suitable

4. As with any physical activity, always warm up thoroughly before training. This should include a period of
activity to raise the core and muscle temperature, and a period of stretching on each muscle group that is to
be worked.
Similarly, you should also cool down following your session. This will help to reduce delayed onset of
muscular soreness, which often follows training, and stretching all the major muscle groups at this time will
contribute towards increased levels of flexibility.

5. A competent person should always spot for you when you lift freeweights. This will prevent accidents
occurring if you drop a weight. Spotters can also aid your lifting, by helping you to complete repetitions which
you find difficult, thus helping you lift to failure (i.e. train maximally). Training partners are excellent for this,
and for aiding motivation.

6. Never train in cramped conditions. Ensuring that you have enough space for a safe lift means that you will
not endanger yourself or others whilst training.

7. Breath-holding helps to maintain core (trunk) stability when lifting, as it increases the intra-abdominal
pressure. (This is also the function of the weight-lifting belt). You should inhale immediately prior the start of
the lift, and exhale upon ending the repetition

8. Mass lifted for each set should be calculated according to the repetition maximum principle: Repetition
Maximum (RM): Maximum number of repetitions that can be performed with a given load. Therefore, if the
Guidelines State that you should do 10 repetitions, select a load that will cause you to fatigue (the point of
failure) at the end of the last repetition in a set.

9. Allow adequate rest between sets (although not too much!). Lifts involving the multiple, or major, muscle
groups require more rest time than those using involving isolated, or smaller, muscle groups.

10.Do not ignore the conditioning of the abdominals and lumbar back, or the development of the postural
muscles that control pelvic and core stability.
Core Stability work

Many strength training programmes ignore the postural, stabilising muscles within the abdominal, hip and
back regions. Many people view many repetitions of the sit-up exercise being wholly appropriate for working
this area. However, such exercises place an over-emphasis on the trunk flexing muscles of the upper
Rectus Abdominuus (the 6 pack), and effectively detrain, or at best under-work, other important muscles in
the core region. Strength in this area is essential to allow you to have a strong or stable base from which the
skeletal lever system i.e. your limbs can operate. Such a stable base will allow a more effective transfer of
strength and power to your limbs from the large and strong muscles in your back and pelvis during power
activities, such as running. In addition, a strong core will protect your back from injury in contact situations,
as external forces are not absorbed by the muscles but transferred from your back during forceful activity.

The emphasis during the following exercises is on quality and control. The back should be braced pelvis
kept straight and aligned throughout. Throughout the following exercises, the neck flexors should be used
appropriately. One way of ensuring this is to put the tongue in the correct position (roof of the mouth)
throughout the movements. If you notice where the position of the tongue against the top of the mouth when
you swallow, this is where it should be positioned during the following exercises.

Practice a back brace by tightening your abdominals with the following cues: Lie flat on your back, with the
knees bent to 90o, feet flat on the floor.

    •    1. Place your hands under the small of your back. Without flattening the back, pull your belly button
         inward, and tighten the pelvic floor muscles (imagine that you are trying to stop yourself urinating).
         You should be able to feel the tightness in your lower back, as your hands should feel like they are
         really being squeezed.
    •    2. Repeat the above in a standing position.
    •    3. Lie flat on your back, with the knees bent to 90o, feet flat on the floor. Raise the legs so that
         there is a 90o bend at the hip and knee joints. Brace the back (as in 1), and, keeping the joint
         angles the same, lower the legs to the floor without the back leaving the floor. Lower until the
         sacrum (bone at the very base of the spine) touches the floor, and then return. Ensure that the
         lower back brace is maintained throughout. You should really feel this exercise in the region of the
         lower Rectus Abdominuus (front abdominal muscle).
    •    4. Balance on one leg and slowly swing the other leg backwards and forwards in a full running
         action without the pelvis rotating, twisting or dipping (i.e. maintain a full emphasis on the abdominal
         brace). Progress to doing the exercise with the eyes shut.
    •    5. Stand on one leg on a wobble board (or rolled up towel) and do single knee bends. You should
         emphasise keeping your balance, pelvis straight (lower back braced) and hip/knee/big toe in
         alignment as you glance down.

Swiss ball work:
A Swiss ball is a large inflatable ball designed specifically to work core stability. Most reputable gyms should
have access to one. If you are not able to access this equipment, then a substitute can be a hot water bottle,
inflated to between 50-100% of capacity. The following are basic exercises (hold each for 5 seconds, repeat
x 5-10) which can be undertaken:
Sit on the Swiss ball in the gym, place 1 foot on the floor (knee bend should be 90o), and hold the other leg
straight out. You should balance and maintain the brace position, thus keeping the trunk and pelvis stable.
Repeat, and switch the leg position.
Lie on your back on the ball, so that it rests just above the level of the shoulder-blade) and balance (keeping
the pelvis level and maintaining the braced position) with one foot flat on the floor (knee bent to 90o) and the
other leg out straight. Hold 5 seconds, repeat x 10.

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