Document Type : Research Paper I Open Access I Released under CC BY 4.0 license


1 Ph.D Hakim Sabzevari University

2 M.Sc Hakim Sabzevari University


The aim of this study was to study the effects of two fitness training programs with long and short sets with the same intensity and volume on physical fitness and performance factors in rugby elite players. 27 rugby players from rugby club of Khorasan Razavi Gas Industrial Cooperative (age 24.29+3.172 yr and height 182.22+5.652 cm) participated voluntarily and were divided randomly into three equal groups: long set group, short set group and control group. Training program included 8 weeks (3 sessions / week) of field selected fitness training including speed, endurance, and plyometric protocols with long and short sets lasting 45 min. / session. During this period, control group participated in routine team technical and tactical practices for 60-70 min. Data were analyzed using the Kolmogorov Smirnov test, one – way ANOVA and paired sample t test. Results showed a significant increase in both VO2max and anaerobic power in the experimental groups compared with the control group (P<0.05). However, no significance difference was observed in agility, muscular power and rugby skill tasks (shoot accuracy, shoot distance, pass accuracy, pass distance) among the groups (P>0.05). In general, it can be said that rugby players can follow interval trainings with long and short sets to improve their aerobic and anaerobic power. Also, they had better use interval training with long set to improve shoot distance and pass distance. More research is warranted to determine the effects of such training programs on other indices of physical fitness and performance in rugby elite players.