Ever since I stopped playing regular club rugby league a small part of me always missed playing, I didn’t miss the injuries, but I definitely missed the fun that I had playing rugby league. Over the years I had tried oztag and regular touch football in Brisbane, but it never quite had the same feel as playing rugby league.
Touch Rugby League the closest thing to playing Rugby League:
About 12 months ago a friend of mine named Blythy told me about this new concept game called Touch Rugby League or TRL which was being played in Brisbane. He explained to me that it was a simulated game of rugby league, that was somewhere in between playing touch football and oztag. He then invited me to come and play with his local team called ‘No Gary No’. He said the team was made up of old school mates and they were pretty flash, in fact they hadn’t lost a game in about 2 seasons of playing.
My Introduction to Touch Rugby League:
Eagerly I agreed to join the team, when I arrived on the first night everyone on the team was very welcoming and happy to have me on board. I started on the bench as I was new and still a bit unsure of the some of the rules involved. As the game started I was excited to see that it was pretty much like watching ball work training that we used to do at rugby League training. After about 5 mins I was subbed on, after about 30 seconds I could barely breath. It had been a while since I had played any sort of football, so while I was still fit, the intensity of the game was something that I was not used to.
I had discovered another Hidden Exercise:
Touch Rugby League as I soon discovered was a great form of Hidden Exercise, as I loved playing it and was having fun whilst my body was operating at about 80% of my maximum heart rate. I was having that much fun that I hardly noticed how hard I was actually pushing myself. In reality what I was doing was a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) session. This session involved, repeatedly sprinting, constant jogging, running backwards, moving laterally at speed whilst still concentrating of the skill set required to play the game, for as long as I could sustain, then I would substitute off the field for a short 2 or 3 minute break, then I would be back into the action.
The games consist of 2 x 20 minute halves with a 5 minute break for half-time. So in total I am having fun doing a 40 minute high intensity interval training (HIIT) session.
Tonight’s game was the first grading game for the new season. We played a team that was brand new to touch rugby league called the ‘Grass Cutters’ unfortunately for them, they had to play the team that has only lost 3 games in 2 years and is the current A Grade men’s champions. We ended up winning the game 13 – 0 (A try is worth 1 point if you were wondering).
Out of interest I always wear my heart rate monitor to gauge how much effort I am putting in. Tonight I burnt 580 kcal having an average heart rate of 158 BPM.