Life as a professional rugby player is far more demanding than doing a bit of running at training, and turning up on matchday, then having some beers afterwards. Gone are the days of players getting by on talent alone. It’s now a full time job, and one that requires a lot of hard work.
These days, players get very little time off. Even in the off-season, they’re training hard, using that time to bulk up and get in supreme shape for the season ahead.
The demands on the body are greater, as players are now bigger and stronger than ever before.
Weight training, fitness, whey protein supplements, and nutrition form a huge part of being in the peak physical condition to take on a new season of top class rugby.
Gloucester are one side who are leaving nothing to chance by using every spare minute to make sure that they’re at the top of the game come kickoff.
“We are working harder than ever because everyone is so enthusiastic. It’s not that we haven’t worked hard before, but it really is an enjoyable place to be at the moment,” says flanker Andy Hazell.
“We have changed a lot of the things were are doing, and some of the emphasis on the way we are looking to play. Everyone is doing things with a smile on their faces.”
“(Fitness coach) Mark Bitcon is doing his first pre-season, and with Bryan Redpath as Head Coach there’s a whole new feeling about the squad.”
UPDATE: RugbyDump now has custom-built programmes for props, hookers, second row, back row, scrum half, fly half, inside/outside centres, and winger/fullback available for download here.
Clip: Sky Sports