How to Avoid The Most Common Injuries in Rugby

Step-by-step Instructions

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Step 1

1. Shoulder injuries. There are a lot of different ways to hurt your shoulder in rugby. Most all of them are summed up as a separated shoulder. Shoulder pads are an obvious step to help prevent shoulder injuries, but they can still happen. Keeping shoulders big a strong is another obvious prevention method. Muscle mass in the traps and deltoids act as the body's own shoulder pads. They protect all the tendons and ligaments involved with the shoulder joint. Keeping the upper arms close to the body when going into contact can also prevent injuries. Tackling with an outstretched arm leaves more of the shoulder exposed to impact. When the bicep is close to the body, the impact of a tackle is absorbed by more of the arm and back instead of just the shoulder.

Step 2

2. Head injuries A sad reality of rugby is that concussions are one of the most common injuries experienced by players. There is protective head gear that can be worn but I've seen players receive concussions regardless. An often neglected piece of safety equipment that does a lot for concussion prevention is a mouth guard. Mouth guards decrease the amount of impact to the head when the jaw is clenched together by cushioning the blow. Keeping your head up while tackling can also prevent injury. The head of the tackler should always go behind the ball carrier. Putting the head in front causes the momentum of the runner to be stopped by the head which is a lot of impact. A runner's leg can also come up and hit the head. Proper tackling technique can prevent a lot of head injuries.

Step 3

There are also several leg injuries that can occur in rugby. I've seen ACL and MCL tears, sprained and broken ankles, shin splint, and pulled hammies. Most of these injuries are simply accidental and not a lot can be done to prevent them. However, having strong and stable legs will help. Icing down any areas that aren't necessarily injured but extra sore or tight after training is also great preventative medicine.

Special Attention

Difficulties people often experience or parts that need special attention to do it right.

As I said before, injuries happen in rugby, plain and simple. Keeping fit and healthy will greatly decrease the risk of injury.

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There's no getting around it, rugby is a tough sport. There is tons of full go contact and injuries happen.

When did you first do this & how did you get started?

It doesn't take long for a new rugger to realize that its impossible to come out an 80 minute match without at least a few bumps and bruises. These minor injuries are inevitable but some of the bigguns can be avoided. I'm going to outline two of the bigger injuries I've had to deal with and the steps that can be taken to avoid them, and talk about a few that I haven't had to deal with.

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