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RFL REGIONAL STRENGTH & CONDITIONING PROGRAMME

Clive Brewer Head of Human Performance clive.brewer@rfl.uk.com

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Regional Programme: Strength and conditioning delivery

Objectives: • • •

Develop the players movement competencies through progressive learning practices Develop the players postural control and strength through progressive learning practices Develop a training aptitude in players through commitment to a delivered programme in a development environment

Ethos: • • •

The training outputs (movement competencies, postural strength and control) are about working with quality: This requires attention to detail and, adequate recovery. Quality is a percentage of perfect – intensity is a percentage of maximum. Making the players tired is easy – we need to get them to understand, from an early age, the need for quality. Develop commitment and work ethic: o Record session attendance o Start the sessions on time o Model energy and enthusiasm from the time the player enters your environment Coach – don’t instruct: Provide mistake-contingent feedback

The Rationale: Rugby League is a collision sport with very high intensity impacts, rapid accelerations and demanding decelerations. It is a game that requires the player to be athletic enough to be able to put their body in a position to be able to resist or exert forces at any given time, for 80 mins duration. Recent evidence (obtained from a range of analytical tools within our International and super league programme) demonstrates that our players need to be faster, and more powerful: However, the fundamental building blocks from which to achieve these objectives are often missing in our players. Therefore, we aim to create a player education that encourages these foundations into place: Therefore we need to focus on the ability to be able to maintain: – Postural control in the sagittal plane – Postural control in the transverse plane – Postural control in the frontal plane Through the following types of movement: • Double leg support • Single leg support

Whilst be able to exert force through, or control / withstand opposing forces in: • Rotational control • Dynamic actions A strength and conditioning programme is designed to increase the players motor system capacity to do work. This means influencing the: • Neuro-muscular system (how muscles are activated) • Musculo-skeletal system (how joints are positioned) • Energy production mechanisms © RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Any effective player development system will be based upon building upon the foundations laid in previous programmes. For many of the players at regional level, this will be their first experience of an organised and well-coached strength and conditioning programme: it therefore needs to deliver, and build upon, the key foundation areas identified above. We progress from generic, athletic, movement competence based programmes to those at later stages of the player pathway, which are more performance focused in nature.

Mechanical assessment

Technical assessment

Coaching decisions Physiotherapy

Playing

Musculo-skeletal assessment Exercise continuum Play Performance based

• Simple • Single • “Unloaded” • Generic Competency

Performance • Complex • Multi-dimensional • “Loaded” • Specific

Competence based

Typical movement dysfunctions identified in England Youth and Academy players through a rigorous and functional postural screening process include: • “Tight” Achilles • “Tight” & dominant hip flexors – Poorly developed & tight hamstrings • Poorly recruited Gluteal muscles – Lateral hip control – Anterior-posterior pelvic tilt • “Tight” thoracic spine • “Tight” anterior shoulder regions • Podiatry issues The regional programme should educate the players in how to prevent (reduce the incidence / severity of) these issues through appropriate motor system activation / education. The programme: • •

Movement competencies are progressive: The programme is designed to enable progression in a number of movement competencies, which are outlined below. The ethos of the RFL programme is to guide local coaching practice: o The session objectives should be met o The session drills / practices are for guidance – experienced coaches should use the developed “curriculum” as advisory, and are free to adapt or substitute these for their own in order to meet the objectives © RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


o

Coach the athletes in front of you: Where they are able to meet the competencies of a level, progress them – where they need to spend more time on a level, they should do so

• Strength and conditioning contributes 8 sessions of 1 hour in length to the RFL Regional programme • Each session should last for an hour, with approximately 18 players per session as a maximum number (quality is delivered with a high coach-athlete ratio, using support coaches as much as possible). The sessions will probably be in a weekly rotation with rugby sessions (as below) • The sessions are designed to be structured as: S&C session before rugby: 0-20 mins

20-40 mins

40-60 mins

Dynamic warm-up: See “Dynamic warm-up” guide

Speed & Agility technique: Competence based progressions detailed below

Progressive combination of 3 elements from:

Progressive combination of 3 elements from:

Strength development / postural control: Competence based progressions detailed below Progressive combination of 3 elements from:

Activate Mobilise Potentiate

Reaction & decision making Acceleration Deceleration Lateral movement Landing mechanics Backwards running Chaotic multi-directional speed

Horizontal stability Single leg support Double leg support Unilateral support Jumping progressions Throwing progressions Controlling rotations Upper body strength

0-25 mins

25-50 mins

50-60 mins

Speed & Agility technique:

Strength development / postural control:

Anaerobic & power endurance: Competence based progressions detailed below

S&C session after rugby:

Bodyweight circuits Conditioning games Anaerobic conditioning drills Resources: • The sessions are designed so that they do not require extensive facilities or equipment: You should have available: o Lots of space for running / moving in o Broom handles o Medicine balls 3kg & 5kg o A floor-ceiling climbing rope (desireable not necessary) © RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


o o o o o

Floor mats (desirable not necessary) Mini-hurdles Agility ladders (for single leg hopping work only) Tennis balls Crazy balls (reaction balls, etc.) (desirable not necessary)

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Dynamic warm-up structure: Please refer to the RFL coaches handbook for dynamic warm-up for more guidance or examples of specific activities: Key theme: Quality of action: Joint positioning determines muscle function • We need to educate our young players that quality work in all aspects of how they move will make them better player and reduce their potential for injury in the future. • Correct execution of basic movement patterns • Opportunity for the coach to evaluate players competence Component of warm-up

Key themes to emphasise:

Activate

Joint positioning: Typically: • Maintaining natural lumber curve with the pelvis in neutral • Knees tracking along the line of the toes • Stabilising muscles working to control movement in 3 dimensions • Co-ordination of upper body with lower body segments in total body movements Through a full range of movements. Utilising the hips / pelvic girdle as a central focus from which movement occurs. Joint positioning is crucial

Mobilise

Potentiate

Example practices • • • • •

Explosive power through technique: • Active, flat-foot take-off and landing • Total body movements • Stabilising muscles as well as power producing muscles • Proprioception is a key component to incorporate.

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Straight leg skips In-line lunge Bridge Planks Skip & Scoop

• • • •

• • • • • • • •

Scorpion Single leg squat thrusts Frog squat thrusts Under / over hurdle walking (if high hurdles available) Up-tall and fall Springboks Animal walks Crazy ball games Reaction games Acceleration runs Maximal vertical jumps Single leg stance wrestling drills


Speed & agility progressions: Key theme: Quality of technique, intensity of intent • We need to educate our young players that speed development is dependant on the player running at 100%, and that sub-maximal work does not make you quicker. This is not well understood in the game. Key concepts

Reaction & decisionmaking

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • •

Posture is always in a position to exert and resist forces Ready position Head steady – peripheral vision

Example practices

• • • Acceleration technique

• • •

• •

• Deceleration technique

• • • •

Lateral movement

• •

Active flat foot contact (a coach should always be able to insert a credit card – nothing wider – between the floor and the athletes heel Many foot contacts in a small space of time “Straight line” body position Must put the centre of mass outside of the base of support and in the direction of travel Low to high body position Players must understand the need for maximal speed (quality, intensity) Complete recovery time (60s for every 10m) Many foot contacts in a small space of time Must bring the centre of mass within the base of support High to low body position Dorsiflexed ankle with “credit card” able to be exerted under the heels Bringing centre of mass outside of the base of support Learning to exert force through the inside and outside of the ball of the foot Hips and shoulders remain “square on” (facing forwards without

• • • •

Boxing games (e.g. in pairs, score points for touching partner on inside of the shoulder or on the knee) Mirror drills Crazy ball games Verbal & visual response drills A-drills Wall Drills Up tall and fall Flying 10’s (gradual acceleration for 10m, hit top speed by 10m, maintain for 10m) 10m, 20, 30m accelerations

• •

Gear change sprints Dead-stop sprints

• • •

Single leg ladder drills Dot-mat drills Lateral “slide” drills

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Running backwards

• • •

• Chaotic multi-directional speed

• •

rotation) during the movement Low body position Chest high Hips and shoulders remain “square on” (facing forwards without rotation) during the movement Push fully through foot with dorsiflexed ankle Keeping centre of mass outside of base of support to achieve acceleration in any direction Many foot contacts Active flat foot contacts with heel slightly off the floor (credit card rule) at all times Hips and shoulders stay square on during movement in each direction Acceleration into space (not when in space) i.e. decelerating to stand a defender up, then reaccelerating past the opposition so that the player is moving rapidly as he passes the defender.

• •

Back-pedal Angled back pedal

Acceleration – deceleration – change direction – straighten & reacceleration patterns Agility course drills (see below for examples) Crazy ball drills Linked to decisions: Foot contact / body positions determined by what is in front of the player (i.e. progressively more open practices) Linked direction change (lateral, backward, forward motions)

• • •

Example Agility drills (for guidance)

Lateral run 7m Start

3m

12m

1

2

Start in the press-up position Sprint the pattern shown, touching the outside of each line with your foot. Run to either point 1, 2 or 3 in response to a signal / command. * Run the drill in the opposite direction * Run the drill laterally (side-stepping the lateral components rather than sprinting forward).

3

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Sprint left or right diagonally forward, depending upon shouted instruction

Run backwards (5m)

= flag or cone

Back and out

10m

“Boomerang drill” = flag or cone

Sprint forward from start, cutting around each cone in succession, in cross formation, and sprint through finish.

10m

Finish = flag or cone

1 Start Press-up

Start

“Cutting circles”

From start, sprint around outside of the circle in an anti-clockwise direction. At cone 1 (or in response to a shouted command), cut in and sprint straight across circle. When you reach other side, perform press-up, then sprint in clock-wise direction, until 2 (or verbal command), and cut inside again. Vary length of sprints around the perimeter.

Alternative: Weave in and out of cones: 1. Running forwards 2. Running backwards 3. Keeping back squared to inside of the circle 4. Keeping front squared to inside of the circle

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Linked concept: Learning to land in jumping: Landing: Example competency stage

Key technical factors to emphasise (competency checklist)

Double –leg landing and stick Double leg run, jump & stick Double leg land, stick and throw

• • •

Single leg land and stick

• •

Single-leg run, land and stick

Single leg land, stick & throw

Ankle dorsiflexed in preparation for landing Flat foot landing Centre of mass lowered and directly above the base of support Knees acting along the line of the toes Force absorbed through knee and hip flexion upon landing Evenly distributed landing across single foot & (where relevant) between both feet Naturally straight (i.e. natural lumbar curve) spine with chest high

Linking skills: Run – Jump – land Run – throw – control Jump – throw - land– run

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Dynamic postural strength & control: Key theme:

Controlling the posture is a key requirement for any player: Evidence from screening further down the pathway indicates that our (young) professional players are not good at this. The regional programme is designed to address this.

Players should be challenged through an exercise prescription suitable to their individual movement control competence

Players should not be progressed past their level of competence in terms of being able to control their movement through an exercise progression:

Horizontal stability Progressive exercises (competence levels) Plank

Bridge

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • • • • • • •

Straight line (no deviations) position between head, shoulders, hip, knees and ankles Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Head / neck in neutral Feet hip-width apart and level Knees bent to 90 degrees Straight line position (no deviations) from knees, through hips to shoulders No pain in the hamstrings – engage glutes fully

Within exercise example progressions

• • •

Plank on knees Full plank Plank with 1 leg raised

2-legged with hands on floor 2-legged with hands pointing to ceiling Single leg with hands on floor Single leg with hands pointing to ceiling

• • •

2 & 3 point balances

• • •

Scapular retracted Shoulders stay level Hips stay level and in neutral, with natural lumbar curve maintained (distance between navel and sternum continuous)

Lateral Planks

Straight line body position between nose, through sternum, navel and middle of the legs No front-back sway

From the “on all 4’s” position: • Single arm raise • Single leg raise • Alternate arm & leg raise • Unilateral arm and leg raise • On elbow • On extended arm • With non-supporting arm raising & lowering continuously • With non-supporting leg raising & lowering continuously • With both non-supporting arm & leg raising & lowering continuously

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Dynamic pillar strength

Straight line (no deviations) position between head, shoulders, hip, knees and ankles Distance between navel and sternum does not change Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders remain level at all times Hips remain level at all times Head / neck in neutral

• • • • •

• •

In press-up position, raise 1 arm but keep in under the body, then lower In press-up position, raise 1 arm to the side of the body, then lower Double arm roll-outs on knees Double arm roll-outs on toes

Single leg movements Progressive exercises (competence levels) Single leg ¼ wall squat with ball support

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • • • • • •

Single leg ¼ squat

• • • • • • •

Single leg lateral squat on box

• • • • • • •

Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support (standing) foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible) Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible) Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot hanging from the side of the box to enable hips to stay level

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

Within exercise example progressions

• •

Stability ball Medicine ball

Single leg ¼ squat with hand on wall (or similar support) Single leg ¼ squat

Lateral box squat


Supported single leg squat (1 below)

• • • • • • • •

Single leg squat to box

• • • • • • •

• • Pistol Squat (2 below)

• • • • • • • •

Overhead Pistol squat

• • •

Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Natural lumbar curve & pelvic position to remain continuous throughout the movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible)

Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Natural lumbar curve & pelvic position to remain continuous throughout the movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Descent until the bottom touches a box (at approximately knee height): the player should not rest on the box, and the coach should ensure that a change in lumbar back / pelvic position does not occur as a result of a player contacting the box Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible) Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders level Hips level Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Natural lumbar curve & pelvic position to remain continuous throughout the movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible) Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders & hips level Object is held above the rear of the head, with arms fully straight

• • •

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

• •

• • • •

Stability ball against the wall Gradually increase range of movement towards full squat position (where hips come below the level of the flexed knee): Controlled descent, explosive ascent Progress to a medicine ball against the wall Gradually remove the use of the arms as a counter-balancing aid to increase complexity

On elbow On extended arm With non-supporting arm raising & lowering continuously With non-supporting leg raising & lowering continuously With both nonsupporting arm & leg raising & lowering continuously

Body weight – arms out to counterbalance Bodyweight – hands on hips Bodyweight – hands behind head Holding a medicine ball to chest Holding a medicine ball at arms length Bodyweight – arms straight above the head Holding a broomstick


• • • • •

Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Natural lumbar curve & pelvic position to remain continuous throughout the movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Support foot flat on the floor Non-supporting foot in front (held as high as possible)

1

Holding a medicine ball in 2 hands

2

Double leg support movements Progressive exercises (competence levels) Gorilla Walk

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • • • • •

Bodyweight squat

• • • • • •

Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders & hips level Hips below knees, whilst keeping feet flat on the floor and the chest high Arms move in a swinging action, whereas legs move in a walking action Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement Scapula retracted & stable, elevating the chest Shoulders & hips level throughout the movement Natural curve evident in the lumbar spine throughout movement Controlled descent initiated through simultaneous flexion of the hips and knees Knees track along the line of the toes Descent continues until the hips are below the knees, with the feet kept flat on the floor and the chest high Ascent without posture changing

Within exercise example progressions

• • •

• • • •

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

Forward / backward movement Lateral movement Jumping movement in “gorilla” position

Hands in front of the body Hands on hips Hands touching shoulders Hands behind the head


Overhead split squat

• •

• • Medicine ball squat

• • • • • •

Springboks See photo sequence below

• • • • •

• Partner squats

• • •

Scapula retracted & stable with broomstick held in fully extended arms above the rear of the head Shoulders and hips are kept level throughout the movement Hips and knees simultaneously flex to initiate movement, with the weight transferring onto the heel of the front foot during the movement Posture is maintained in an upright position The knees track the line of the toe during the movement Scapula retracted & stable, elevating the chest Shoulders & hips level throughout the movement Natural curve evident in the lumbar spine throughout movement Controlled descent initiated through simultaneous flexion of the hips and knees Knees track along the line of the toes Descent continues until the hips are below the knees, with the feet kept flat on the floor and the chest high Ascent without posture changing Focus is on strength and correct posture Push both feet into the floor as you drive upwards into standing Use the arms for balance Try not to round your back as you sit up and stand: Keep a straight back throughout – straight is strong! The person who is holding the legs can lean backwards and pull on the lower legs as their partner tries to stand if they need more help – moderate the pull according to the ability levels Ensure that the drive is too a “straight” standing position Co-ordinated working together Upright trunk to push off the floor Push from the glutes to drive to standing

• •

Broomstick Medicine ball held above the head

Medicine ball held to chest Medicine ball held at arms length

• •

• •

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

Start from lying on the floor – enabling momentum in the sit-up to aid athlete to standing Start from seated upright as per photo sequence Reduced assistance from partner aiding the standing

Back-back squats Squat – sit – legs out straight – legs back in – push to standing


Overhead squat

• • • • • •

High bar broomstick back squat

• • • • • • • •

Press behind neck from squat position

• • •

Scapula retracted & stable, elevating the chest Shoulders & hips level throughout the movement Natural curve evident in the lumbar spine throughout movement Controlled descent initiated through simultaneous flexion of the hips and knees Knees track along the line of the toes Descent continues until the hips are below the knees, with the feet kept flat on the floor and the chest high Ascent without posture changing Scapula retracted & stable, elevating the chest Shoulders & hips level throughout the movement Natural curve evident in the lumbar spine throughout movement Feet shoulder width apart Controlled descent initiated through simultaneous flexion of the hips and knees Knees track along the line of the toes Descent continues until the hips are below the knees, with the feet kept flat on the floor and the chest high Ascent without posture changing Player descends to the bottom position of the squat with broom behind the neck Broom is pushed upwards to a straight arm position with the broom above the top of the head As the broom is pushed upwards, the posture should not change and the player does not rise from the squat position

• •

With Broomstick With medicine ball

Bodyweight – arms straight above the head Holding a broomstick Holding a medicine ball in 2 hands

• •

• • • • •

Springboks:

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

Body weight – arms out to counter-balance Bodyweight – hands on hips Bodyweight – hands behind head Holding a medicine ball to chest Holding a medicine ball at arms length


Uni-lateral support movements Progressive exercises (competence levels) Standing lunge (stepping forward onto front foot, pushing back to standing)

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • • •

• • • Cross-over lunge

Round the clock lunge Forward Backwards Sideways (each side) Diagonal movements Combination of

• • • •

• •

Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders & hips remain level Trunk remains upright throughout the movement Lunge forward is sufficient to enable the player to lunge to a position where the knee is level with the hip The front foot should land flat on the floor Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement The player should be able to perform the movement equally on each side From a standing lunge position, the player brings the left (or right) foot across in front of the body, keeping the ankle dorsiflexed and facing forward upon landing, so it is completely perpendicular to the direction of the body’s travel. The knee of the front leg should be directly over the toes upon landing. The centre of mass of the athlete should be switched out with the base of support, so the nose of the athlete is now over/outside of the knee of the front leg, which is now holding most of the athlete’s body mass. The player remains close to the ground as they move into the end position. The back leg should come off the floor to emphasise the shifting of the bodyweight outside the base of support From here, the athlete pushes off the outside of the front foot back to the start position, and repeats the drill to the other side Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders & hips remain level Trunk remains upright throughout the movement Lunge forward is sufficient to enable the player to lunge to a position where the knee is level with the hip The front foot should land flat on the floor Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement

Within exercise example progressions

• • •

Broomstick behind neck Broomstick above head Holding medicine ball

• • • •

Broomstick behind neck Broomstick above head Holding medicine ball Holding med ball above head Holding med ball above head in 1 hand

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


the above

Walking lunge

• • • •

• • •

The player should be able to perform the movement equally on each side Scapula retracted & stable Shoulders & hips remain level Trunk remains upright throughout the movement Lunge forward is sufficient to enable the player to lunge to a position where the knee is level with the hip The front foot should land flat on the floor Knee to track the line of the toe during the movement The player should be able to perform the movement equally on each side

• • •

• •

• •

Forward movement with broomstick behind neck Transitioning from 1 foot to a double foot stance Transitioning from 1 foot to the other foot without the double foot stance Backward movements with broomstick behind neck In-line lunge Forward / backward movements with hands behind head Holding med ball above head Holding med ball above head in 1 hand

Jumping progressions: Example competency stage 2-foot Vertical jump

2-foot Horizontal jump

Key technical factors to emphasise (competency checklist) • Forcibly extend the knees, hips and ankles by pushing into the floor with both feet, leaving the ground at the same time, arms swing up and reach upward during flight • Centre of mass travels with the correct trajectory (upward) • Full triple extension of ankle, knee and hip • Reach high with the body and arms for as long as possible • Bring the toes up towards the knees (flex the ankle) prior to landing • Cushion the landing by flexing the hips and knees as the ball of the foot lands on the floor – coach a flat-foot landing, even though this means that the heels aren’t really contacting the ground at the same time as the balls of the foot • Bend from knees and hips, arms straight and behind, countermovement into take off, arms moving behind, swinging from the shoulder • Push through both feet evenly, force is generated by straightening knees and hips, pushing down into the floor through the feet • Arms swing through with force and stretch forward and upward, hips and knees fully extended as feet leave the floor, trunk leaning forward

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Reactive land (land and take off again)

• •

Minimal ground contact time Controlled, active flat-foot landing without weight transferring to heels

• Example progressive practices:

Skipping Jump rope sequences

Multiple flat foot jumps

Multiple straight arms bounces

Jumps over mini-hurdles with box to land on every 2-3 jumps

Partner games to encourage hip drive & flat foot landing

Coaches should remember: Single leg drills are more than twice as intensive as double leg drills Lateral jumping and hopping movements are important for multi-directional games players Quality is much more important than volume: • Low intensity exercises – 6-10 reps • Higher intensity exercises – 3-6 reps Jumping down from relatively high positions (or landing from high positions, e.g in multiple jumps over normal hurdles) requires a lot of strength, and should be discouraged within a repetitive & formal programme until players are strong enough to cope with this. Linked activities: Vertical jump with maximal medicine ball throw for height Horizontal jump with maximal medicine ball throw in front Horizontal jump with maximal medicine ball throw behind Jump onto box with medicine ball thrown behind

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Upper body movements Progressive exercises (competence levels) Handstands

Key technical factors to emphasise

• • • • •

Press-ups

• •

Stretched tight body, head tilted slightly to look at hands Abdominals and glutes braced Arms locked straight, with hands held shoulder width apart Push up through the shoulders from the hands throughout the balance Legs held tightly together, pointed high in the air, with feet pointed Full range of movement: arms fully straight down to chest just off floor Maintain straight line body position through knees, hips, shoulders and head

Within exercise example progressions

• • • •

• • • • •

Bench Dips Requires step or box to raise body from Horizontal pulling

• • •

• •

• Partner wrestling

• •

Inverted pullups Note: Requires bar to hang from

• •

Full range of movement Scapula position Upright trunk throughout the movement

Body remains low to the floor – strength developed by overcoming frictional drag Elbows lead the movement – then shoulder / back muscles contract to pull the body forward If legs needed, look for co-ordinated action between arms and legs Players should keep their abdominal / trunk region braced throughout the wrestle Players should try and keep their centre of mass within the base provided by the knees when being defensive. They should move it forwards or backwards to be offensive, as they try and move their partner off balance. Pulling from straight arm to fully flexed arm Straight line to be maintained between shoulder, hip and knee

• • • • • • • • •

• • • •

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

Face the wall, walk feet up Face away from the wall, spring feet up Using a spotter Unsupported

Press-up on knees Press-up Press-up with hands wide Press-up with hands together Press-ups moving over the medicine ball Single arm-press-ups Clap press-ups Hand-stand press-ups With legs bent With legs straight With legs raised onto bench or chair Dip bar action Commando crawl – legs assisted Commando crawl – upper body only

Players kneeling in front of each other – gripping each other by wrapping their arms around the partner and securing the grip by clasping their hands Knees bent Legs / body straight Legs raised Full chin-ups


Rope climbing

Coordinated action between legs (pushing) and upper body (pulling) necessary

• •

Using arms and legs Using arms only

Straight line position required between shoulder and hip at all stages As player progresses to toes or feet off floor, the straight line position between the ankles, knees, hips and shoulders is maintained Scapula to remain retracted and stable at all times. Winging or elevation should not occur.

Hands walk forward from all 4’s position Hands walk forward from press-up position Hands walk forward from feet raised position Hands walk forward from “wheelbarrow” position with feet held Walk forward, backwards and laterally from the wheelbarrow position

Note: requires floor – ceiling rope Shoulder walks

• • •

Creating & controlling rotations Progressive exercises (competence levels) Forward rolls

Backwards rolls

Key technical factors to emphasise

• Hands flat on the floor, palms down and shoulder width apart • Tuck the chin into the chest, allowing a roll over a rounded back • Tucks the heels in quickly; Keep the arms strong and push against floor • Reach up and forwards with the arms to standing • Take off by pushing through the legs, fingers tucked under shoulders placing hands flat and should width apart on floor. Keep body tucked up. • Chin is tucked in to the chest when rolling with a rounded back • The hands are shoulder width apart, and placed beside the head • When hands are on the floor, the player should push strongly through the arms to clear the head off the floor as the body rotates to place feet together on the floor • Knees are tucked tightly into the chest, legs together, and heels are tight to the bottom • Stand by extending the knees, hips and spine. Finish in a straight, standing position. • Roll into standing is one fluid sequence of movement

Within exercise example progressions

• •

From standing From walking / running or jumping

• •

From crouched From standing

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Seated twist and throw

• • •

Cartwheels

• •

• Split stance med ball throw

• • • Walking lunge with trunk rotations

• • •

Windscreen wipers

• • • Reverse hamstring curl

Hips to be engaged as the player rotates trunk to throw Scapula remains retracted, with the trunk upright and natural lumbar curve maintained Rotations are forceful, and ball is caught as early as possible / released as late as possible Arms remain straight as the body rotates over them Straight line is maintained throughout the posture, with the feet moving directly over the hands Abdominals remain braced throughout the movement Even split between front foot and back: The trunk (centre of mass) remains directly above the mid-point of the split Feet and legs remain facing forward throughout the movement Hips remain level throughout the execution Rotations should be as forceful as possible, and the throw as explosive as possible Knee continues to remain tracking along the line of the toes as the trunk rotates Chest remains elevated and scapula retracted as the players trunk rotates Rotation is from the waist and through the thoracic spine Arms remain out straight, with shoulders flat on the floor at all times. The back should stay in contact with the floor at all times Rotation is through the hips Feet stay together at all times Movement is the same between the left and right hand rotations Straight line between the shoulders, hips and knees is maintained throughout the movement Abdominal area remains braced throughout

• •

Using arms and legs Using arms only

Single repetitions with each side leading Double repetitions Multiple repetitions Cartwheel into rolls / strength balances

• • •

• •

Double arm Single arm

Med ball twist opposite side to front leg Med ball twist same side as front leg

• • •

Knees bent Legs / body straight Legs raised

• •

Kneeling – lower to floor Kneeling – lower to floor then hold Kneeling – lower – hold return

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Reverse hamstring curl:

Windscreen wipers:

Seated twist & throw:

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Anaerobic & power endurance: Key theme:

Players who have not gone through puberty yet should not do anaerobic work: reduce the intensity accordingly

Work: rest ratio is important. In post-pubertal players, utilise a 2:1 work:rest interval for such short duration sessions

Challenge the players through a range of activities that are based upon: o Total body movements o High – velocity movements

Sessions that are easy to set up and transition to within the structure of the strength and conditioning session

Encourage the players to self-set goals and targets that will focus their work and adherence to the training routine

Example sessions: Note: these are only examples of ideas that might be used by coaches to achieve the objective Circuit training: Exercise

Time

Recovery

Press-ups

40 secs

20s

Sit-up with twist

40 secs

20s

Squat thrusts

40 secs

20s

Dips

40 secs

20s

Back hyper extensions

40 secs

20s

Multi-directional jumps over low hurdle

40 secs

20s

Maximal medicine ball vertical throw with burpee

40 secs

20s

Crunches

40 secs

20s

Alternate leg squat thrust

40 secs

20s

20m shuttle sprints

40 secs

20s

Conditioning game: “Killer rectangles” is a modified conditioning game that combines anaerobic conditioning with agility, balance, coordination, reactions decision-making and teamwork. It can be played with eight or more players (it works better with 12+), and requires some marker cones, open space and 8–12 foam or soft rubber balls to play. The playing area (size determined by numbers involved) is shown below, with four equal playing zones, with each of the two teams split between alternating areas.

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


Ball Team 1 Team 2

On the coaches starting whistle, the players collect the balls as quickly as possible and throw them at opposing team members. If a player is hit, he must run to the sidelines (coaches can manipulate which one) and perform an exercise (eg 15 down and ups: lie face down on the floor, feet together, arms outstretched into a crucifix position – from here, stand up as quickly as possible and perform a maximum vertical jump, land and return to the start position = 1 rep). After doing this, the player rejoins his team. If a player catches a flying ball or hits an opponent with a ball, his team receives a point. If a player throws a ball that is caught, he must go to the sideline and perform a different exercise or sequence (eg 10 sit-ups into 10 press-ups) before rejoining the game. When a player is exercising on the sideline, he is out of the game and cannot be targeted. Resting players can be around the outside to retrieve any stray balls. The winning team is the one with the most points. Adapted Running Drill:

The ’Glory Grid’

© RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010


To conduct the Glory Grid drill a coach will need six cones and a measuring tape. How it works: 

The cones are set up as indicated above.



On lap 1 the players run past cones in sequence shown at 70%.



On lap 2 the players sprint from cones 1 to 2, 65% around rest of lap.



On lap 3 the players sprint from 1 to 3, 65% around rest of lap.



On lap 4 the players sprint from 1 to 4 (via 3), 65% around rest of lap.



On laps 5 and 6 the players sprint to cones 5 and 6 respectively.



On lap 7 the players sprint from cone 1 all the way around and back to 1.



On lap 8 the players do a 2-minute recovery walk.



On lap 9 the players repeat lap 7.



On lap 10 the players repeat lap 6.



After this, the players repeat laps 5–1 in descending order.

Notes:  

Distances can be altered to suit the facility that sessions are delivered in The player needs to show a definite change of pace at the start of the sprint on all laps.



Such sessions can also be done over very short distances with the players running at 100% of their maximum.

Š RFL PERFORMANCE & COACHING 2010

RFL regional Programme  

RFL regional Programme

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