8 Rugby Nutrition Supplements For Tougher Tackles

Nutritionally reviewed by Jennifer Blow

As a rugby player, you’ll always be looking for that competitive edge over the opposition. Whether it’s to sprint a little faster, tackle harder or improve endurance, there’s no doubt that being at the peak of your ability is the answer more tries. The problem is you can train as hard as you like, but without the right rugby nutrition, there’s no way that you’ll be able to keep up on the pitch. Put simply, a rugby player’s diet can be the difference between a match won and a match lost.

The whole body is pushed to its limits in a game of rugby as there’s a need for sprinting, stamina, and strength as well as a focused mind. Taking supplements for rugby training and matches is a sure-fire way to make sure that you’re performing at your peak. It can be hard to know where to start with nutrition as there are so many aspects involved, so we’ve compiled a list of the essentials to keep you on the ball – literally.

Pre-Match Rugby Nutrition

THE Pre-Workout+

THE Pre-workout+ is the ultimate way to start and finish strong. The exclusive PhaseTech™ caffeine delivery technology means that the initial energy boost will be repeated mid-match to help keep you one step ahead of the opposition. This never-seen-before blend also features VASO6™ and hawthorn berry for increased blood flow to the muscles, special ingredients for increased focus and energy, as well as AstraGin® and BioPerine® to ensure you maximise energy production and nutrient absorption.1-4

Creatine Monohydrate

Creatine is one of the most researched supplements out there and will definitely give you results in terms of muscle mass, strength, power and aerobic capacity.5 It’s a naturally occurring molecule that increases the production of ATP, meaning you have more energy available for that extra sprint or tackle.6 Over time, being able to go that extra mile in your workouts will help to build up your muscles for important matches.7

100% Beta-Alanine Amino Acid

If you’re keen on creatine, then Beta Alanine is a perfect partner. Beta Alanine is a modified version of the amino acid alanine. It enhances muscular endurance by allowing for 1-2 additional reps in training, so that you can enjoy the extra strength on the pitch.8 This superior supplement can also improve moderate to high intensity exercise performance such as sprinting, so that you can blast down the pitch after the ball.9


rugby nutrition

Half-Time Rugby Nutrition

Electrolyte Powder

If you’re usually dripping by the end of some tough tackles and feel dehydrated, then don’t sweat it – there’s a solution. Electrolyte Powder is made up of essential electrolytes sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium for good rugby nutrition. These salts are often lost through sweat, but are actually important in many bodily functions such as muscle contraction, so you need to replace them to keep performing at your peak.


If you’re looking for a low-calorie, high-energy boost during a match or training, then it’s time to buy some BCAA. Branched chain amino acids (BCAAs) are 3 essential amino acids (leucine, isoleucine and valine) that play a major part in muscle protein synthesis and recovery, meaning you can hit every training session and match even harder than your last.10

The other benefit of BCAAs is that they can easily be added to your pre-match and half-time water bottle to improve your performance on the pitch. They’ll stop your body using your muscles for energy, so that you maintain mass and strength, despite the lengthy play-time.11

THE Amino+

This is the intra-workout supplement that you’ve been waiting for. THE Amino+ contains tiny PhaseTech™ beadlets to provide a phased release of BCAA throughout your match and afterwards. It’ll fuel your muscles through the workout and prevent muscle protein breakdown – supporting you through that first tackle until the final whistle. As if that wasn’t enough, it also contains glutamine and free-form amino acids for that extra protein-synthesis punch.

Post-Match Rugby Nutrition

Whey Protein

There’s no denying that rugby’s intense – sprinting, tackling, kicking and throwing for 80+ minutes is going to take its toll on every inch of your body. Making sure you recover quickly so that you can get back to training tomorrow is incredibly important for improvement, so you want a supplement that makes this possible.

Whey Protein is a kit bag essential for every rugby player looking to improve their game. If you know anything about exercise performance, you’ll know that protein is the most important aspect for muscle recovery, growth and repair.12

Our Impact Whey Protein comes in a huge range of delicious flavours and delivers 21g of protein per serving, with only 103 calories – ideal for recharging your recovery and building thighs of steel to chase down that ball.

THE Whey+

If you’re looking to take your performance to the next level, then it’s time to up your whey game with this innovative new supplement. THE Whey+ is at the forefront of sports nutrition technology and will certainly provide you with a swift post-match recovery. Consider your rugby nutrition game raised.

The GroPlex™ technology is a unique blend of fast-digesting hydrolysed whey protein and slow-digesting micellar casein – this means you’ll get an instant post-workout protein hit as well as a lengthier supply, way past the last whistle. The PhaseTech™ release of BCAAs and glutamine means that you’ll be maximising muscle growth and repair.


Take Home Message

Providing your muscles with fuel and making the most of muscle growth and repair will help you tackle hard and sprint even harder. Taking supplements for rugby before, during and after a match or training will put some power behind your kicks and could even make you man of the match.

Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.

1 U.S. Patent No 6,706,756 BI, Fig.7

2 Rigelsky, J. and Sweet, B. (2002). Hawthorn: pharmacology and therapeutic uses. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 59(5), pp.417-422.

3 AstraGin; NuLivScience; “Clinically Demonstrated to Significantly Increase the Absorption of Amino Acids, Peptides, Vitamins, and Other Nutrients in Intestinal Cells to enhance the Nutritional Value of Targeted functional Foods and Supplements

4 Majeed, M., Badamaev, V. and Rajendran, R. (1998). Use of Piperine as a Bioavailability Enhancer. United States Patent.

5 Kreider, R. B., Ferreira, M., Wilson, M., Grindstaff, P., Plisk, S., Reinardy, J., … & Almada, A. L. (1998). Effects of creatine supplementation on body composition, strength, and sprint performance. Medicine and science in sports and exercise30, 73-82.

6 Casey, A., Constantin-Teodosiu, D., Howell, S., Hultman, E. G. P. L., & Greenhaff, P. L. (1996). Creatine ingestion favorably affects performance and muscle metabolism during maximal exercise in humans. American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology And Metabolism271(1), E31-E37.

7 Balsom, P. D., Söderlund, K., Sjödin, B., & Ekblom, B. (1995). Skeletal muscle metabolism during short duration high‐intensity exercise: influence of creatine supplementation. Acta Physiologica Scandinavica154(3), 303-310.

8 Hoffman, J., Ratamess, N. A., Ross, R., Kang, J., Magrelli, J., Neese, K., … & Wise, J. A. (2008). β-Alanine and the hormonal response to exercise. International journal of sports medicine29(12), 952-958.

9 Sweeney, K. M., Wright, G. A., Brice, A. G., & Doberstein, S. T. (2010). The effect of β-alanine supplementation on power performance during repeated sprint activity. The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research24(1), 79-87.

10 Shimomura, Y., Murakami, T., Nakai, N., Nagasaki, M., & Harris, R. A. (2004). Exercise promotes BCAA catabolism: effects of BCAA supplementation on skeletal muscle during exercise. The Journal of nutrition134(6), 1583S-1587S.

11 Blomstrand, E., Eliasson, J., Karlsson, H. K., & Köhnke, R. (2006). Branched-chain amino acids activate key enzymes in protein synthesis after physical exercise. The Journal of nutrition136(1), 269S-273S.

12 Esmarck, B., Andersen, J. L., Olsen, S., Richter, E. A., Mizuno, M., & Kjær, M. (2001). Timing of postexercise protein intake is important for muscle hypertrophy with resistance training in elderly humans. The Journal of physiology535(1), 301-311.

Evangeline Howarth

Evangeline Howarth


Evangeline has taken part in competitive sports since a young age. As a qualified RYA Dinghy Instructor, she understands the importance of proper nutrition for fuelling extreme and endurance sports, especially due to her experience in Team GBR Squads and captaining and coaching her University first team.

In her spare time, Evangeline loves running – especially marathons. On the weekends, you’ll find her taking on water sports or hiking up a hill. Her favourite evenings are spent taking on a HIIT session or squats in the gym before digging into some spicy food and a ton of vegetables – yum!

Find out more about Evie's experience here.

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