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Scrum and Ruck Conditioning (Drills to build neck and core strength) with Mike Cron

As coaches we need to drive the development of neck and core strength for all our players. Neck strength is required in many areas of the game including the tackle and breakdown area. In this session ex All Black forwards coach Mike Cron takes you through a multitude of drills and exercises for all players not just front rowers. Starting at easy and working through to hard. Dealing with body awareness, staying strong with movement, incorporating the neck and core.

Part 1. Scrum and Ruck Conditioning (Drills to build neck and core strength)   35:50 Member content

In this module I’ll take you through a multi- tude of drills and exercises. Starting at easy and working through to hard. Dealing with body awareness, staying strong with movement, incor- porating the neck and core. As coaches we need to drive the development of neck and core strength for all our players,not just the front rowers.

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Course Part 1
Duration 35:50
Topics Conditioning TRS Español Coaches Corner
Applicable to Coaches  
Languages English

Click on CC button at top left of video for other translation options.

Course reviews

Great practical skills that players can spend 5-10 mins each session. There is no discussion regarding when to breathe in and when to breathe out especially when in pushing position – does this have any impact?


Fantastic stuff from the Doc.


Super stuff from the master Doctor himself


I particularly like this set of drills. I convert the player on player neck push to the side into a drill to teach American Football players (High School age) how to set up and target a safe rugby tackle. The premise is how would you set up a tackle if you had to play without your arms. Really teaches where to focus, set up, and execute the tackle safely.


great activiteis to help us help the players, simple yet specific, should help by just making athletes more confident in their strength.


Odlicno – Excellent :)

Bosnia & Herzegovina







Wow, this entire session was excellent for all players. Invaluable. Thank you can’t wait to use at next practise!


This is just great, very rugby specific, all players will benefit from this. Its obvious that Cron puts tons of effort and thought into his drills that improve players safety and effectiveness.


Excellent drills, used a few before – every time the guys enjoy them, because of the competitive element. I also use them in my ju jitsu class!


Very inventive and interesting, however I was wondering how this exerciseswould be for younger players i.e under 15s ?.

Great Britain & Northern Ireland

This video is a wonderful, all exercises useful for safety in rugby. Thanks Mike Cron.


Excelente, muchas cosas las conocia pero aprendi por que se hacen asi? y los ejercicios nuevos los pondre en practica!! Muchas Gracias


Brilliant video ! Simple but very effective.

Great Britain & Northern Ireland

Love these practices, simple effective ways to improve bracing and neck strength, vital for our kids. Thanks Mike!


As a former player and wrestler….excellent functional exercises for core and neck strengthening. I’m going to implement them immediately. Thanks Mike


Great video for safety of all players including the backline.


thanks so much excellent stuff

Hong Kong

great scrummaging videos for new players!


work routines with how long players should be on the other hand seem exlentes procteccion exercise for the players there is any contradiction why not to do


Great video – i have used the neck exercise (1 on top of three people in “strong” position) with our under 13s but only putting hands between shoulders. We can do the neck version when they are reasdy in a few years. Love the whole video. Thanks.


available the Spanish translation? (subtitle) thanks.


Thanks Ian, we’ve contacted Mike directly and his recommendation for U14 age players would be the iso-metric and simple K1 drills are fine. If you are looking to introduce the press ups off the head, take real care and ensure the players know understand it’s not about volume initially.

Take the time to assess the neck strength of the individuals, individually load and progress accordingly. All activities need to be introduced with the strictest emphasis on correct technique. Then slowly progressing load and increasing repetitions.

Thanks for the query and all the best with the U14’s.

New Zealand

Qu. From what age are these drills appropriate? There are some very good ideas but I am nervous about using some of them with U14 players. Any advice?

Great Britain & Northern Ireland

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