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Rugby - Sport for hardcore people
No pads, no helmets, just balls. This is the motto of the contact sport rugby, which originates from England. This sport is not considered hard and risky for no reason, but it is still considered a "gentleman sport". The players of the teams must have a good constitution. Endurance, speed, agility and strength play a special role within the team, depending on the playing position.
The sport developed in England in the 19th century, parallel to football. Since then, different variants of the original rugby have developed. The most important are the subsports Rugby Union and Rugby League. Other variants are beach rugby, Rugby Sevens, Touch Rugby and Tag Rugby. The latter differ primarily in the number of players in the team.
Rugby - Rules and Teams
The rules of this sport are quite complex at first sight. Rugby is also perceived as sluggish by newcomers as it is often interrupted. The basic rugby requirement is of course the rugby ball. This egg-shaped ball may only be thrown backwards or handed over by hand. If the ball is thrown forward, the players must make a scrum. The players 1 to 8 of both teams stand in a bent position opposite or interlocked. After the referee has given the starting signal, the respective teams try to push the opposing team away by pressing together, thereby clearing the ball for their own team. Kicking the ball, however, is possible in all directions. In rugby, it is permitted to obstruct the player in possession of the ball by grabbing it under his shoulders, called "tackle", and at best to make him fall. If this is successful, the player must release the ball. If the player is lying on the ground, both teams may push other players for the ball. The goal of rugby is to have scored more points than the opponent at the end of the game. This can be achieved by various actions. The first way to score points in rugby is to bring the ball past the opponent into the opponent's field and place it on the ground. This so-called attempt, called "try" in England, earns 5 points in Rugby Union. After a successful attempt, the team also can kick the ball between the rods over the crossbar. This so-called increase, which is called conversion in English, brings a further 2 points in the Rugby Union. The jump kick in rugby, known in English as "dropkick", refers to the kick of a ball that has touched the ground. The last way to score points in rugby is by kicking a penalty kick. This refers to the kick of the ball through the goalposts from the point of a serious offence. The kicks bring 3 points according to the rules of the Rugby Union.
In general, it can be said that rugby is practised worldwide mainly in New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and Argentina. Other nations within Europe are France, England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland and Italy. Rugby is also the national sport in Oceania, especially in Fiji, Samoa and Tonga.
A speciality is the Haka, which has meanwhile become well known throughout the rugby world. This originally ritual dance of the Maori, the natives of New Zealand, is traditionally performed by the New Zealand national team, the All Blacks, before the game as a kind of 'war dance' and includes a certain choreography, and shouted instructions and a kind of body percussion. The Haka is intended to give the players a psychological advantage over their opponents.
Rugby - Training and play
As with most ball sports, rugby training is divided into two parts. On the one hand, the game within the team and the interaction between the teams must be trained, on the other hand general skills like coordination, speed, strength and endurance must be trained.
Rugby equipment is particularly useful for training general fitness. For example, coordination leaders can be used to train coordination, speed and sure-footedness. In training, cones are used to stake out the playing field or to mark positions or moves. Hurdles are also used to coordinate and build up strength in the legs. Slalom poles can also be used for coordination training. Other sports equipment such as skipping ropes or training belts for strength building and sprint training are suitable for improving the general fitness of the teams.
The feeling for the ball can be well trained with the so-called rebounder. The rebounder throws the ball back at different angles. Since the rugby ball is generally very difficult to catch after rebounding due to its shape and because it has an unpredictable trajectory, this device is a good training aid for the ball feeling and the responsiveness. Special accessories like dummies, air bodies, punching balls and the so-called tackle bags belong to the essential rugby equipment, because the frontal contact with other players is an essential part and requires overcoming at first. Furthermore, there is a special training device for training the crowd. This is the scrum buck, called scrum machine in England. It is used to train the use of strength as well as the posture in the crowd. The tactic board is of course a must for every team and every training session. Rugby is a very strategic sport, which is why a tactical board or tactical foils are used in the dressing room before every game and in the half time after the first forty minutes and are part of the ultimate rugby requirement. The clothing and equipment for this sport are also part of the special rugby requirement, as they differ from other sports equipment. In addition to standard jerseys, rugby shoes, rugby socks, the optional rugby "helmet", which is rather a kind of foam-lined cap, and as an absolute must the mouthguard belong to the rugby needs of every player.
Rugby in Germany
Rugby is becoming more and more popular in Germany. Not only are games broadcast on German sports channels, but most larger cities now have at least one club that represents this sport. In addition, there are various leagues and tournaments, which also increases the demand for rugby in Germany. While many items such as cones, hurdles, ropes, coordination ladders and much more belong to general training needs and can also be used for other sports, rugby requires more special items, aids and equipment.