The spiral punt or torpedo kick is a long kick used in rugby to gain
ground in general play. It is also for normal or penalty kicks for touch.
Be sure you handle the ball well (core skills in main menu) and know your
before you attempt to master this kick.
Why make your punt spiral
You use this kick because you make accurate kicks and you can kick
enormous distances for huge gains in ground
The way you position the ball on your foot means a large area of contact
between your foot and the ball. Minor variations in placement
have only a small effect on the accuracy of your kick.
The ball travels through the air point first, spinning as it goes which
improves your accuracy and maximises the length of your kick.
How you do this kick
Spiral punt start
Spiral punt finish
See a spiral punt in the video on the main kicking page.
At about waist height, with fingers and thumb on seams over the ball
and one hand under...
...hold it pointing slightly towards the ground,
slanting like this '\' away from you,
across your body.
Raise it to shoulder height then remove your lifting hand
from under the ball.
The ball is now at arms length perfectly positioned for the kick
as in the start image.
As you step forward to kick, the ball hangs there under your
out-stretched fingers and thumb moulded to the shape of the ball.
Gently guide the ball down towards your foot,
which is coming through to kick.
This helps you maintain the correct positioning of the ball.
As you are positioning the ball you are also stepping into the kick.
Your leg comes through and meets the ball...WALLOP!
You strike the ball with the bony part high on your foot, the part covered by
Point your toes and kick in a straight line towards your intended target.
Encourage the ball to roll off this bony part of your foot and be
helped in spinning with a flick from your toes.
Spin is applied naturally to the ball. No other effort is required.
Your leg and foot are working like the whip turning a spinning top.
Experiment with the angle you hold the ball. That angle and where the ball
strikes your foot determine the amount of spin.
When your foot strkes the ball determines how the ball travels.
If you let the ball get close to the ground before you kick, the ball will
tend to travel lower flatter and further.
If the ball is high off the ground when you stike it with your foot, the ball
will tend to go higher and travel a shorter distance.
Experiment with all the angles until you can make the ball go exactly where
you want it to go.
Follow through so you are accurate and kick huge distances.
Practice kicking along straight lines on the field. This lets you know where
the ball went compared to where you wanted it to go.
Soon you will be accurate and kick a long way.
Go for accuracy first.
Putting the ball consistently where you want it
is most important. Gradually you will kick further..
Close-up views of this spiral kick
Spiral punt, foot about to strike
The ball would probably be better angled a bit more away from me
but doing it specially for the camera affects my concentration!
Note the pointed toe presenting the bony mass of the foot.
Spiral punt, foot strikes
The ball does look to be too much across the foot. More angle would be better
but most are good, long, accurate, spiralling kicks and this was no exception.
good rugby handling skills needed
avoid throwing the ball up, place it accurately on your foot
ball angled across foot
strike with bony top of foot, toes pointed
encourage the ball roll off the foot to create spin
follow through for accuracy and distance
Add to you kicking toolbox. Follow the link below to find and master
the other kicks that will help you shine.