Incorporating plyometrics into your training program is one of the best ways to develop power, especially in the legs. In general plyometrics work by overloading the muscle eccentrically (lengthening) and then forcing the muscle to contact concentrically (shortening). This distinct method of training for power or explosiveness has been termed plyometrics.
With regard to rugby, plyometrics can aid players to run more powerfully, jump higher and tackle harder. Warming up is crucial. Spend 10 minutes jogging or skipping followed by 5-10 minutes of stretching the muscles involved. Don't forget to stretch your lower back.
1. Bounding - Take over sized strides while running 30 meters, concentrating on spending more time in the air. 1-minute rest between runs. Try to complete 5 runs.
2. Box Jumps - Over a set of ten hurdles; jump two footed over each hurdle aiming on height and distance. 1-minute rest between jumps. Try to complete 5 sets.
3. Depth Jumps - Standing on a box with another box 2-feet away. Step off the box and quickly jump over the opposite box. Over time increase box height and do not jump off the box. Try 3 sets of 10 depth jumps. 3 Minutes rest between sets.
4. Hops - The same as box jumps except one legged. Box jumps and hops can also be done using stairs, which are of adequate height.
5. Lateral Step Ups - Stand to the side of a box and step up onto it using the leg closest to the box making sure that this is the leg that does all of the work. Step back down once the working leg is fully extended while standing on the box.
6. Tuck Jumps - Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and knees slightly bent. Jump up and bring your knees to your chest. As you land repeat immediately keeping ground contact time to a minimum. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions e.g. 10-15.
6. Press Ups and Hand Clap - Perform the lowering phase of the press up as normal. Hold for one second at the bottom of the press up and powerfully and quickly press up so that you can perform a clap before landing back for the next nest press up. Try to perform 3 sets of 5 press-ups with 3 minutes between each set.