Union fitter than league?

Discussion in 'General Rugby Union' started by St Helens RLFC, Feb 18, 2009.

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  2. QLD

    QLD Guest

    People say league is tougher than union and takes more out of you but spectators dont think scrums and lineouts arent that tiring in union. Both take a lot from you mentally and physically.
  3. toxicfiend

    toxicfiend Guest

  4. Nat

    Nat Guest

    Played both and I reckon that you have to be fitter in league but I find that you require more upper body strength in union. Those fat props you see mightn't that fit but they are strong buggers.
  5. I think Nat has got it spot on. Between the backs, I don't personally think there'd be a lot of difference with regards to fitness, if any, though our backs are arguably more likely to get tackled.

    When it comes to forwards however the debate gets very interesting. There are union forwards who would last about five minutes in league, they couldn't get back 10 at all. However, similarly, there are very few if any, none that I can think of, props in league (ex union players not withstanding) who would survive a scrum or that porridge on the floor that happens after every tackle.

    Different horses for different courses.
  6. gingergenius

    gingergenius Guest

    It''s stupid because there are different types of fitness.

    I will say, I'd expect a good 7 in Union (ie. McCaw) to be among the fittest men in world sport, because their job is non-stop running around, divng over, getting up again, little sprints here and there... they never get a break and it's stop-start all the time.
  7. Precisely.

    It's a bit of a weird point he's trying to make. But its encouraging discussion, so...
  8. toup

    toup Guest

    It really is a tough comparison to make., and it depends how you measure fitness. If you treat them as seperate sports, then I guess it's like comparing a long distance runner to a rower... different types of fitness, different requirements etc. The fact remains that on any basic fitness test (beep test etc), all of these players would score pretty highly. Maybe not Matt Dunning.

    In this case however, there are obviously a lot of similarities between the two sports. I think the mixed success to cross-code players probably sums it up. Sure, some of this is down to technical and tactical unfamiliarity, but I think if the physical demands of either were generally so different, we would see a far higher percentage of successful / unsuccessful code switches.

    At professional level, all league and union players are trained to a physical peak, and so I don't think there is a general gulf in fitness levels at all, they just have very different requirements from their players which cannot be attributed purely to 'fitness'.
  9. dullonien

    dullonien Guest

    After watching the Wales v England game, I'd say Gethin Jenkins is up there with the fittest in union, considering the 18+ stone he's carrying around. Back in 2005 I remember a comment in one of the games that Gethin had the best bleep test results in the squad, and he seems even fitter today! putting in 17 tackles, grappling for the ball ruck time, clearing out umpteen rucks, supporting players for offloads etc. All this on top of a props usual duties of scrummaging. I can't emagine many people could keep that up for 80min's let alone carrying the weight around he does. On ScrumV on Sun night, Kingsley Jones commented that back in Bridgend days, when Gethin was just coming through as a fat teenager he was beating them all on cross country runs. Some people are naturals I suppose.

    I agree with the majority on here, I doubt League conditioning could be improved much, for what they do at the moment, they can easily last the 80mins required without dropping much in tempo and tenacity, same for Union. Union has deffinatly caught up though, no longer do you find overwight players (well Dunning and Adam Jones aside, though Jones seems much better) up front, all are well conditioned etc.
  10. Bowerman

    Bowerman Guest

    That's like comparing Hockey to Speed Skating
    The speed skater is faster, but couldn't take a body check
    but they are both fit in their own terms
  11. dundeesmiffy

    dundeesmiffy Guest

    Different styles of fitness.

    League is non-stop fair enough, they probably do more work during the game...however Union is a lot more start and stop, which requires a whole different skill set if you get me.

    I would say however, League players probably have more stamina, if that's what you're talking about.
  12. Nat

    Nat Guest

    With League also I found you make the tackle and get and go back the 10 or have a rest at marker, but in union mauls take alot of upper body strength for what seems like an age. I agree that both sports require different levels of fitness. No doubt.
  13. tommowins

    tommowins Guest

    As a forward you are expected to get to most rucks, well at my age anyway. In comparison, as Nat said you can make a tackle and then run back 10 and have a little rest as they play goes the other way. Whenever I watch League I seem to see a lot of people walking around. I would be pulled off the field for doing that. But thats just my opinion anyway.
  14. <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE (tommowins @ Feb 19 2009, 11:17 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}></div>
    A rest? I wish!No such thing as a rest in league unless there's an interchange.
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