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Traditional rugby boots are very similar to football boots, but the thing that makes them different is a high cut designed to give extra support to the ankle.

However, more and more players prefer to use football style boots, especially backs, who favour the low cut for extra mobility.

So it's important to understand what position you're playing before choosing what kind of rugby boot you want.

Choosing a pair of boots

Be more concerned with finding boots that fit you than those which look the flashiest.

A player will stand out because of their ability rather than the boots they're wearing.

It's important to understand the shape of your feet and your running style.

Find out whether you're flat-footed or have a high arch.

Ideally rugby boots will fit snugly, although if your feet are still growing it's advisable to allow a little bit of room.

Also, different players prefer different fits.

As forwards rely on lower body strength for power in scrums, they need extra support around the ankle to help prevent foot injuries.

Kickers prefer a tight-fitting boot because it gives them a better feel for the ball, while props like a high ankle cut for extra support in scrums.

It's worth wearing the same types of socks you would wear on the pitch when you try on a boot for size.

Uppers

Leather and synthetic boots are both available and there are advantages with each.

Leather moulds itself to the shape of your feet but can stretch out of shape in wet conditions.

Synthetic boots are often lighter and less expensive.

Try and find soft uppers, this will prevent potential injuries - you may even find that a boot that's a mix of leather and synthetics is best for you.

Screw-in studs

This type of boot tends to be popular because players can adjust their studs depending on the conditions.

If the pitch is muddy then it's worth using a longer set of studs, changing to shorter studs on a drier day.

When changing or tightening studs it's a good idea to put a bit grease to the thread to prevent them from rusting.

Studs

As rugby is a full contact sport, wearing the wrong kind of studs can do you - or a member of the opposition - a lot of harm.

Referees will check whether your boots have any sharp edges or ridges, but it's also your duty to make sure your boots and studs are in good order.





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