The RAMP Warm Up for Rugby

We all know we should warm up properly but often we don’t give it the full attention it deserves. There is nothing worse than starting a game or weights session and feeling a bit flat and lethargic and a proper warm up will prevent this. But often you don’t know what to do and when to get the most out of your warm up. What you need is a system… enter the RAMP warm up!

The RAMP warmup format has taken on many forms but this is the one we have found to be most effective. It consists of 4 parts working on key aspects of a warm up:

R: Range Of Motion

A: Activation

M: Movement Preparation

P: Potentiation

Let’s look at each in a little more detail…

Range of Motion

Now this isn’t your standard stretching! The range of motion section consists of movement drills that involve moving through your maximum range of motion and help you get stronger in those positions. It’s like the referee says use it or lose it! so you need to get into deep ranges of motion under load regularly to maintain and improve your range of motion and control. Drills that challenge the ankles, hips and thoracic spine range of motion should be common place here.

Here is one of our Upper Limb Mobility Warm Ups:


Here we highlight key muscle groups that need activation for optimal performance. Often individuals will have specific muscles they need to concentrate on but we’ve found the common culprits are the glutes, obliques, deep abs, triceps, rhomboids, middle back, external rotators and deltoids. Exercises that recruit and help people be aware of these muscles will help their use in larger movements.

The TRX THI is a great way to activate the muscles of the middle/upper back and external rotators

Movement Preparation

This is when we get specific! simply use exercises similar to the ones you will use in your training session only maybe easier variations or lighter loads. A bodyweight squat before barbell back squatting for example. We love to use lunge variations here as they are great for firing up all the muscles of the lower body and can be done anywhere! If you are going into a contact session then variations of wrestling are good preparation.

Barbell Complex can be used to prepare you for barbell training:


Now it’s time to be explosive! Even if your goals are strength or size you should include some explosive work to fire up the nervous system and help you recruit the fast twitch muscle fibres (the ones that have the biggest potential for growth by the way!). Good options include jumps, plyos, throws, medballs and sprints.

Plyometrics are a great way to fire up the nervous system before a workout:

Putting it all together!

Pick 1-2 exercises for each section of the warm up and perform for low to moderate number of reps (remember warm up not fatigue). The Ramp warm up is a simple system to make sure you’re getting prepared effectively to get the most out of training and to perform at your peak! Don’t get carried away with it, use it to prepare you and don’t let your warm up take away from your workout. Try this warm up at your next training session and let us know how many PB’s you smash!! #BuildingMachines

If you want to quickly and easily design kick ass warm ups check out the Rugby Renegade Warm Up Generator:


Want to become the machine you were meant to be?

Join Team Renegade Now

Recommended Posts