Rugby Ready - World Rugby's preparation resource

Injury management

Return to play

Players who return to play before full recovery place themselves at significant risk of making the injury worse or developing another injury.

Players should only return to play once the coach, doctor or physiotherapist has tested them to ensure that they are ready to get back onto the field.

These returning players must once again demonstrate that they are Rugby Ready. The tests should include similar fitness tests to those used at the beginning of the season and Rugby skills and movements that the players will perform in a game, e.g., tackling, sidestepping, jumping, etc.

Player profiling information should be used to compare performances and see if players are once again Rugby Ready. If players can demonstrate the same performance level as pre-injury, then they are once again Rugby Ready.

Normally, the best advice is, if it hurts, don’t play.