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Should I be Concerned About Playing Rugby?

Applying for life insurance as a keen rugby player can be confusing. On one hand that fact that you are physically fit is in your favour, while the fact that it is considered a dangerous sports activity potentially cancels out this benefit by pushing up your premiums. In order to understand this in a little more detail, it is a good idea to first understand how health and fitness can affect the cost of your life cover.

Why Health Affects Affordability

Insurance companies decide the level of your premiums based on a number of factors, chief among them being your health. If you have pre-existing medical conditions or incidence of somebody in your family dying from a hereditary illness, then these facts will be taken into account by your insurer, who will push up the cost of your insurance. This is because they are making a calculation based on how long they think you will live and therefore how many years' worth of premiums they consider you will end up paying before they have to pay out. With term life insurance, where the policy expires after 20 or 30 years, they are effectively calculating the risk of your dying during this period of time.

It is obvious that if you have suffered a heart attack in the past or a cancer scare, or if either of your parents died due to a hereditary condition like diabetes, then the insurer will consider there is a higher risk of your passing away sooner. If you exercise regularly and eat healthily then conversely these things should make the company lower your premiums. However, there are some sports, which are considered high risk due to their hazardous nature. Extreme examples are adventure sports like sky diving, white water rafting and rock climbing. Although these activities might help to keep you fit, from the insurance company's point of view, they carry a higher risk than a sedentary lifestyle.

Is rugby dangerous?

Rugby is almost two hundred years old as a sport and much has changed since the nineteenth century when deaths were more common in rugby. The International Rugby Board, itself now over one hundred years old, has banned dangerous play such as eye gouging and spear tackles, where the player is lifted and dropped head first into the ground. While these things can still happen, the fact that they are outlawed by the rules makes them thankfully a rarity. For the professional rugby player, it will probably be necessary to secure specialist cover. There are many insurers willing to offer both health and life insurance cover for professional sports people, where the risk of injury is very high and can also have a catastrophic effect on the ability of the policy holder to earn a living.

For the amateur rugby enthusiast, the best thing to do would be the ask the insurer directly what the difference in the cost of your premiums is going to be as a result of you playing rugby once a week. If the effect of your hobby on your life insurance is minimal, a few pounds a month for example, then you will probably decide that the saving involved in cutting out that part of your life is simply not worth it.

Rugby can be a wonderful way to spend your free time and can also contribute to your staying fit and healthy provided you don't get injured. Serious injuries are rarer in amateur rugby, where the stakes for winning are much lower, and shouldn't pose life insurance concerns. Provided your life cover is still affordable, you should enjoy life and rugby to the full.


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