Brian O’Driscol, Kieran Read and Jean DeVilliers. All great players no doubt about it. All world class. All of them have these things in common.

Rugby isn’t a complicated game. You run forward, you pass backwards and you make sure the other team can’t do the same. That’s pretty much it. So why is it that some people are so good?

I’ll tell you bro.

  1. Work Ethic

  2. Staying injury free (the majority of the time)

  3. Strength to weight ratio

These guys have more than just these things in common like the all run brilliant lines, they show touches of sublime skills and they’ve captained 3 of the top teams in the world (Lions, All Blacks and Boks) but take a look at any top level player. They might not have the skills or rugby brains of these 3 but the definitely have the 1,2,3 combination.

If it’s something all the top players have then there’s got to be something too it right? You want these qualities in your life.


Work Ethic

Do you know how you get good at something?

You work your balls off. It’s pretty simple. There’s a 10,000 hour rule flying around which says that to become an expert at something takes 10,000 hours (that’s just under 3.5 hours a day for 8 years). I personally think there is ways to get in done in less but the point is it take time. Do you think these guys ever thought:

“you know what, i’m not really feeling training today. I’m sore and I’ve got a cold”

Damn straight they did. Everyone gets to the point when they just aren’t feeling it. But having the strength to go through with it even when you don’t want to is having the right work ethic. Turning up, kicking ass and taking names even when you don’t want to.

What do you do to get it?

Get out of your comfort zone.

It’s comfy and easy just saying “fuck it”. It’s way easier to stay on the couch with your dinner then is is to go out in the snow to throw a rugby ball around at training. It’s way easier to have an extra 45 minutes in bed than it is to get some early morning conditioning in.

There’s no way around that.

So how do we make it so we get shit done? We make our lives a misery if we don’t do what we should.

Here’s my favourite way at the moment.

I set a goal, lets say get morning conditioning done 3 times a week.

  1. I go to my missus (or your old girl/someone who’ll hold you accountable) and tell her what I want to do.

  2. I give her a cheque for £XX amount of money and say that if I don’t do the conditioning she can cash the cheque and buy whatever she wants.

  3. Do the damn conditioning because I don’t want to lose that cash and she doesn’t need any more shoes.

Mate, It’s way worse to lose something you have than not be given something you want.

Start putting something in place which is going to actually have an impact on you if you don’t hit your targets.

Aim big as well, really kick yourself in the nuts, that’ll make you work hard.

nut shot