For lovers of rugby, nothing beats the excitement, the flight of the ball, the crunching tackles and the winning tries! Here at Anaconda, find rugby balls for players of all ages, whether it is for a fun kick about in the garden or a more serious session on the local sports field. The range includes rugby balls for those who are just starting out, training balls and some balls with national team colours and logos - why not get the rugby fan in your house one as a present for Christmas or a birthday?.
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Buying Your First Rugby Ball? Here Is What You Need To Know!
To most people, a rugby ball only comes in one size and in one material. However, nothing is further from the truth, as rugby balls have evolved considerably since the invention of the rugby game. To ensure you are fully informed before you purchase your full rugby ball, we have created a handy guide for you below.
When Was The First Rugby Ball Used?
The history of the rugby ball is hard to track, as variants of modern rugby have existed well before the first actual modern rugby game was recorded in the 1800s. A man called William Web Ellis caught the rugby ball and ran with it, something that was not actually allowed at the time. Still, it is that catch that would be the predecessor of rugby we know today.
Original rugby balls did not look very different from the ones we know today, but they were made differently. The inside of the rugby ball contained a pig's bladder. This bladder would then be covered by leather panels, sewn together to create the strong rugby ball we all know and love today.
What Materials Are Used For Rugby Balls?
Even though the exterior of different rugby balls can look similar, they can be made from different materials. Leather is still used as an outer shell these days, with the only difference that the pig's bladder has been replaced by rubber.
If you decide to buy one of the traditional, leather balls, do not forget that leather tends to absorb water. So, if you play in wet weather conditions, the rugby ball can become a lot heavier and more cumbersome. If you wish to avoid this, there are plenty of rugby balls made from synthetic materials as well, which have moisture-wicking properties.
What Sizes Are Available For Rugby Balls?
Depending where you are in the world, the available sizes for rugby balls can vary considerably. That being said, most sports organisations will support the fact that rugby balls come in four different sizes.
The smallest rugby ball is the size three ball. The size three ball is designed for children, usually between the ages of seven and nine. There is also the size four, which is also designed for children but better suited from ages ten to fourteen.
In the world of rugby, female athletes get their own size of rugby ball. Interestingly, the size of the female ruby ball is four-and-a-half, while the men's size is slightly higher at five.
Another interesting fact about rugby ball sizes is that different manufacturers can actually cause deviations from the normal dimensions, this means that a size five rugby ball from one brand may not necessarily match the dimensions of another branded rugby ball.
Should I Practice With A Smaller Ball Before A Rugby Game?
No. Ball handling is important during rugby, so practicing with a smaller ball will not yield the results you want to see on the field. In fact, it could cause problems during your actual match. It is always recommended to choose the same size ball as will be played with in your match.
Some athletes want to make their training a little harder, which is understandable if they are looking to build more stamina or strength. If this is the case for you, you can take advantages of so-called weighted rugby balls. Even though these balls will have the same dimensions as your regular rugby ball, it can provide you with some extra weight to train with.
Is There A Difference Between The Balls Used In The Rugby League And Those In The Rugby Union?
This is an interesting question. The rules are considerably different when comparing the Rugby League to the Union, so it is no surprise that the balls are slightly different too. However, the differences are very minor. League balls tend to be sharper and more pointed compared to those used in the union. This is the only real difference of note.
Still, if you are a stickler for details, please note that any new rugby ball should have a weight between 410 and 460 grams. The ball pressure for your game should always lay between 9.5 and 10 PSI.