Current World Health Organization recommendations suggest that the average person should get around 30 minutes of mild to moderate exercise five days a week, but expanding waistlines across the world indicate that not everyone is meeting this goal. But it’s not just about avoiding getting fat. Physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality, taking the lives of 3.2 million people each year. Playing rugby represents a fantastic way to get off the couch and get active.
An intensely physical sport, rugby requires that players wanting to compete at a high level achieve a significant degree of fitness. Depending on the level of competition, rugby players can train up to four days a week (with professional players often training twice daily) using a combination of techniques including skills, fitness based exercises, weights, agility training and conditioning. Through this rigorous exercise, players are able to improve their general fitness and prevent a host of negative health effects associated with being overweight such as diabetes, cancer and heart disease.
Rugby requires a high degree of preparation, and through participation in structured training and playing a regular game schedule, rugby can develop key mental skills of self control and discipline.
Players learn the importance of goal setting and can establish a blueprint for achieving those goals. This is an especially important lesson for younger players as they learn valuable life skills that they can take with them into adulthood: for future successes both on and off the pitch.
It has always been said that rugby creates a special friendship. The physical and emotional intensity that its practice requires and the fact that it is a minor sport, turn it into a big family without borders.
From there it come the famous “Third-half time”, that takes place once the game is over and both teams meet up to share beers and snacks. It is the perfect occasion to fraternize, to alleviate the stress of the game and to promote respect among clubs and supporters. In short, both belong to the same team; the one that represents rugby and its values in the world. Don’t you think?
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