Why Rugby Is Not For The Faint of Heart
Rugby is the national sport of New Zealand, Wales, Fiji, Madagascar and a few other countries and is a popular sport worldwide. The new 7 vs 7 setup will be initiated in the Rio Olympics of 2016 after failing to make its appearance in the 2012 London Olympics. So book your tickets now!
The rules of the sport are simple, you can either take the ball forward towards the opposing defense yourself, or you can kick it, but you can not throw it forward. Physical contact of almost all sorts including tackling and pulling is allowed but you are penalized if you deliberately foul your opponent. Everyday more rules are being introduced to make the sport more fast paced and competitive.
Even though it is a fairly popular sport with a large fan following, Rugby is considered to be one of the most dangerous sports present with repercussions lasting a lifetime. The physical requirements of the game are very high and players need to be fully fit and bulky (yes!) in order to play professional. Speed is also a very important requirement as increasing your physical size decreases your agility so obtaining balance between the two is essential.
Every one player out of 4 will get injured during one season. That is 25% of the entire professional Rugby players of all the countries combined. Around 30-50 tackles are made in one match by one single player. If there is a vast difference of skills between two participating teams, that is a breeding ground for neck injuries amongst players. It’s also believed that neck injuries make up 25% of all injuries in rugby.
Here are some stats and figures of injuries that occur in Rugby all around the world:
- Rugby has a 3 times higher rate of injury than soccer.
- Around 57% of injuries occur during the match and specifically in the second half, the rest 43% occur in training alone.
- Strains and muscle contusions are the most common type of injuries (40%)
- Concussions are fairly common amongst players which lead to dizziness, forgetfulness and other symptoms
- The long term damage to the body is always unaccounted for as retired players are damaged to the point of no repair.
Many complaints are also received from players regarding the soreness and pain that is felt post match or post training. That is why, ice baths are a fairly common practice in rugby as it speeds up the process of healing considerably.
The recovery time after each injury also increases, especially recurring injuries to specific locations. Players constantly complain about not being able to heal completely before the next match but it still does not stop them.
All these factors, including the little amount of equipment and protective gear used during matches make rugby a scary and physical sport.