The uni-axial strain loading of a rubber rod struck head-on by a planar shock wave is studied experimentally and numerically. A physical model capable of describing the rubber response to its collision with the incident shock wave is proposed. This model takes into account the rubber compressibility and the friction forces developed in the contact surface between the rubber and its surrounding rigid walls. The good agreement that exists between experiments and their numerical simulations verifies the validity of the proposed physical model and the accuracy of the numerical scheme used for the numerical simulations. It is found that for the considered loading mode, i.e., uni-axial strain loading, no shock waves exists in the rubber rod. The stresses measured/calculated in the rod result from compression wave motion (with constant velocity) in it. It is also found that the friction developed between the rubber rod and its bordering rigid walls plays an important role in damping the intensity of the wave propagating in the rubber due to its collision with the incident shock wave. The larger is the friction, the larger is the stress damping rate in the rubber.