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Thread: U14 Weight Training

      
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    Default U14 Weight Training

    No. 1 son is finishing U13 this season and will be U14 next. as a No.8 He's keen to bulk up a bit, however I've been reluctant to allow him to weight train feeling he's been a bit too young. In the last year he's grown a lot (now 5' 8" at age 12 (13 in a couple of weeks)) and is about 9.5 stone.

    Any advice as to what if any weight work he should do ? I understand free weights are the method of choice.
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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    I would not encourage weight training at that age, the bones are still grwoing and weights may well distort growing bones. They distort adult bones as well - the skeleton is a living organ and responds to excercise as does musculature - but in those under about 17 /18 the effects can be undesirable.

    If he wants to excerise then he would be better using his own bodyweight as resistance - press ups, pull ups, sit ups, squat thrusts, star jumps etc. The traditional schoolboy gym stuff.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    I definitely would avoid weights and, as the previous post suggests, would work on bodyweight resistance. I'd also invest in a Swiss Ball and work core stability. I believe that core stability is the most important asset after anaerobic fitness for a forward. You can get some good exercise DVDs with these things. Even for adults - bodybuilding can be a mistake unless done in a very focussed way. I always felt it slowed you down.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    No weights until 17 / 18 in my view, and even then with care as bones, muscle, tendons, etc are still growing and balancing.

    of course lots of use of traditional own bodyweight excercise techniques, and expecially cardio-vascular work.

    plus yoga type stretching and flexibility excercise

    keep him on a decent diet, off the fags / drugs / alcohol, and out of fast food outlets

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    Shokk are a specialist company that operates franchises that provide special equipment and qualified instructors for weight training for juniors.

    Might be worth a look if there's one near you.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    The local gym allows children to join the gym at age 14 but they don't allow them to do free weights. Additionally, they have special teen trainer (14-16) sessions, for one supervised hour a day. These sessions allow them to do whatever but they suggest doing more cardio machines and less of machine weights.

    What I'd suggest is if the local gym has a facility like this, enrol him. If not, possibly go down with him so you can see what he is doing (or possibly give him sessions to do).

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    I've been through this with my son recently (U.14). See these RFU resources:
    http://tinyurl.com/p3bgg9
    http://tinyurl.com/c5d88r
    Conclusion
    31. Young rugby players need a long term, comprehensive skills and conditioning programme that includes well planned and supervised strength training from an early age. This is desirable for all young players who might eventually play club rugby as adults; it is essential for young players who aspire (realistically) to play at the elite level.
    http://tinyurl.com/pw6tg4
    Children from seven to ten years old may be introduced to simple exercises, such as
    lunges and step-ups, with child-sized barbells (or barbell substitutes such as broom handles or dowels) and dumbbells. They must be taught - and demonstrate that they have learned - the correct technique in all the exercises in the programme. No resistance should be applied until they can demonstrate correct form without additional weight. There must be a gradual, progressive and manageable increase in training volume. At this age, up to three sessions a week of around 15 minutes would be beneficial.
    I have a RFU-recommended programme at home, which I will attach when I get back from work.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    I was looking for an article from a London Irish conditioning coach I think but found this instead.

    http://www.community-rugby.com/commu...%20players.pdf

    Agree press ups and pull up should be enough for most players however there are exceptions. It comes down to being sensible and keeping an eye on their training.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    I have a fundamental difference of opinion with the RFU in their focus on power and strength, and believe more cardio-vascular work is better for the immediate post adolescent years.

    This RFU 'power' policy has created a generation of muscle bound supplement fed 'monsters' and a pre-occupation with a contact style of rugby, rather than evasion and guile.

    As always it is a question of balance, and I believe that the balance has swung too far to the power / strength side in recent years.

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    Default Re: U14 Weight Training

    Would agree that bulk isn't necessary but strength is for personal well being and enhancing skills. How you do that depends on the player and the role. I aim for lean, strong players to play open fast rugby. Other teams like big heavy forwards and walk the ball around the pitch. My players have the strength to compete and the speed to move the ball quickly across the park.

    Certainly don't want gym monkeys.

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