Rugby union is the most common type of rugby played. It uses the standard rugby equipment like rugby balls, safety gear, rugby boots and other rugbywear and accessories. It is no doubt that the rugby ball is an integral part of the game. If you are a player, you constantly handle the rugby ball but how much do you know about choosing one? Good quality rugby balls have to meet certain criteria. A rugby ball of poor quality can affect the outcome of the game and the performance of the player. The length of standard rugby balls should not be more than 300 millimetres; it should have a middle circumference of 580-620 millimetres, four stitching panels and a weight of 460 grams. The perfect rugby ball should not be slick so that it that loosens the grip, should not have stitches fallen out and a non-lopsided weight for the intended ball control. Waterproof material of rugby balls make them easy for playing in wet and muddy conditions.
Rugby boots are the key equipment any player must have and pay attention to. These can decide your level of performance and help maximise your skills. Rugby boots are similar to football boots but with high cut ankles for extra support. The backs tend to use low cut boots for increased mobility. The position you play, shape of your feet and your running style should decide the type and design of boots. Screw-in studs are more popular because they allow you to change, adjust and maintain the boots. Forwards and props need extra support around the ankles in scrums. Kickers need tight-fitting boots for a great feel of the ball and for a more confident kick. The game of rugby requires some form of head protection. These usually cover the ears to avoid damage to the ears during scrums. The headgear is light synthetic material that can absorb impact. The front row forwards especially need head protection in collisions. Cauliflower ear is a common condition that can be prevented with a head guard in rugby.
Base layers are another form of rugby gear that helps in keeping players warm in cold weathers and comfortable in hot weathers. These are functional clothing that comes in the form of long tights, shorts and shirts made out of wicking material and qualities that keep the body at an ideal temperature. Under Armour is a widely used brand of base layer that most players wear. These keep you dry and comfortable with muscle support for greater performance. Under Armour body protection is essential for playing in the rain, heat, in cold weather conditions and to keep the moisture from sweat away from the skin.