A Comparison of Physiological Profiles of International, National and Club Level Female Rugby Union Players.
University of Wales
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Due to the lack of research into women’s rugby especially across a range of abilities, this study was aimed to provide physiological profiles for international, national and club level female rugby union players. Twenty four female rugby union players completed the study, 8 subjects in each of the three sub groups. The subjects were a mean age of 20±1 year, a mean height of 166±6.9cms and a mean weight of 79.1±12.7kgs. Each subject completed six fitness tests as well as having anthropometric measures taken. The fitness tests were; 10m speed test, 40m speed test, 10x40m repeated sprint ability test, a three repetition maximum bench press test, a three repetition maximum squat test and a multi stage fitness test. There were a number of significant correlations between the three sub groups at a p < 0.05 level. Results showed that the international athletes performed significantly better in the fitness tests then club level athletes and/or national level athletes. National level athletes performed better then club level in the fitness tests except in the strength tests; however these results were not significant. It was concluded that international athletes were taller, heavier and achieved significantly better results in the fitness tests then national and club level athletes which would show that international athletes are fitter so that their bodies can sustain the increased level of work rate needed for international rugby union. For further studies into this area, a larger sample size could be used to get more precise means; a different selection of fitness test may also be used to measure other aspects of fitness such as agility or flexibility.
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