Leanne Riley, England Rugby International and Harlequins Ladies scrum-half, gives her top 10 benefits.
There are a multitude of benefits from team sports; confidence, friendship, leadership, respect – the list goes on. What makes rugby unique is that there is room for everyone.
Leanne Riley, England Rugby International and Harlequins Ladies scrum-half, gives her top 10 benefits of playing rugby for women:
Contributes to a healthy state of mind
Being part of a rugby team provides an essential sense of purpose and belonging which is a vital element for a healthy state of mind. Camaraderie with fellow players, intense physical activity and working together can help females build a positive state of mind and healthy outlook.
Rugby can provide a fantastic outlet for everyday frustrations. Focusing on the game in hand allows you to forget and release the everyday trials and tribulations. Additionally, the hormone endorphins released into the body whilst taking part in physical activity will instantly improve even the worst of moods.
Improved self confidence
Rugby is a character building sport. It encourages courage, strength, value and respect which all play a part in boosting female self-confidence.
Enhanced social life
Playing a team sport such as rugby provides interaction and inclusion which in turn allows you to forge friendships that often carry on away from the field and to the bar! Solidarity and respect are both characteristics of rugby but also of successful friendships.
Improved cardiovascular fitness
The constant running and sprinting required for playing rugby provides an excellent cardio workout as it helps you achieve an increased heart rate through interval periods. This helps build a strong heart and lungs that in turn helps provide faster oxygen delivery to all muscle groups allowing the whole body to work more efficiently.
Improved muscular performance
Explosive power is essential in the game of rugby but also a great way to strip fat and develop lean muscle. Adding in the cardio, agility and strength elements of playing rugby provides you with a full body workout, low body fat and very efficient muscle groups.
Good agility is vital when playing rugby. Both hands and feet are required to change direction and pace very suddenly throughout the 80 minutes. Consistent turning and abrupt dodging all add to improved flexibility.
No barriers to entry
Everybody can play rugby – every shape and size, tall or short, fast or slow and many more. There are no barriers. You just need the grit and determination to get stuck in.
Playing rugby requires a very structured and dedicated training and preparation schedule to prepare for a regular and successful game schedule. This dedication to the game helps players develop similar elements off the field that can be applied to everyday life situations.