Lewis Moody's Rugby Fitness Workouts

(Image credit: Unknown)

England and Bath Rugby flanker Moody does the following drills to make him faster, stronger and more explosive on the rugby pitch. But you don't need to be a player to reap the benefits of these effective workouts. Give them a go.

The Warm-Up

Spend ten to 15 minutes on this to prepare your body for the more explosive drills to come.

  • Jog along for 25 steps, lifting your legs as high has you can, then turn around and do the same back again.
  • Jog along for another 25 steps but kick your feet in front of you as you go.
  • Do 25 walking lunges.
  • Do 50 walkovers, where as you walk you bring one leg up and out to the side, rotating it around before putting it down and repeating on the other side.
  • Run forwards on your toes with small steps for 50 metres.
  • Stand facing your training partner with your right hands on each other's right shoulder, and swing your inside leg between you to stretch out your hamstrings.

Speed And Strength Drills

These exercises mimic pitch conditions and build explosive power for running and tackling.

  • Sprint starts. Begin with one hand holding a rugby ball on the ground and then pick up the ball and sprint with it for 20 metres before jogging back. Repeat twice.
  • Weighted sprint starts. Again begin with one hand holding a rugby ball on the ground, but this time with a rope tied around your waist, attached to a tyre and then sprint away, dragging the tyre for 20 metres before jogging back. Repeat twice.
  • Mark two lines ten metres apart and get two team-mates to stand facing each other on the marks, each holding a tackling pad while you stand between them. As one team-mate moves towards you, you have to run at him and push him back over his line before turning around and immediately doing the same with the other team-mate. Repeat ten times on each side.
  • Mark out two points on the gound ten metres apart. Stand a large pad in the middle and run up to it tackling it and taking it to the ground. Get up and run onto the next line. Turn around and repeat ten times.
  • Stretch out all your muscles and tendons, especially in your hips, groin and shoulders.

Power Moves

Once you've recovered sufficently from the pitch workout, do this power workout. During the season Moody does four to six reps to maintain strength. He increases this to eight or ten in the off-season when building muscle.

One-armed cable press

Stand facing away from a high cable pulley and hold the handle on your right hand. Place your left leg forwards and press your right arm outwards with your palm facing down.

One-armed standing cable row

Stand facing a low cable pulley with your knees bent and take the cable in your right hand. Then pull the handle towards you, rotating your trunk as you go.


Hold a bar with an overhand grip with your hands wider than shoulder-width apart and pull yourself up so that your chin is level with the bar. Lower all the way back down again before repeating.

Barbell squat

Hold a barbell across your shoulders and, keeping your back upright, bend your knees until your thighs are parallel to the floor.


Bend your knees and take hold of a barbell on the floor. Keep your back ina neutral position and then lift the bar so that it rubs up your shines and thighs until you are standing. Lower it back down again.


Stand left side on to a high cable pulley and hold a D-handle with both hands. Pull the cable down and across your body, making sure you keep your arms straight. Repeat on the other side.