Cricket is a game that involves long time activities having low and high intensity. Players play for hours or even for a day and at any time they need rapid movement of there body. Like batsmen have to sprint up and down to take a run, and bowlers have to bowl overs regularly and for that they also have to run and followed by their bowling action which place a high stress on the body. Fielders also have to run around the ground to catch the ball and throw the ball to the player stand behind the wickets. So, for performing these type of activities in a game, your body always need a warm-up before the game starts.
Now a days when we talk about Cricket, few names comes to our mind automatically. Like Ms Dhoni, Virat Kohli, Steve Smith , AB de Villiers, Kane Williamson, Chris Gayle, Joe Root and many more. These are the one of the fittest players and great performers. And fitness play an important role in that. Cricketer do different types of exercises to keep themselves fit. And warm up before any game is also an important part of their performance & fitness and it also help them to keep away from different types of injuries.
What is Warm-Up?
A warm up is a session which is done before doing any physical activity or in terms of cricket, when players do few types of exercises before playing any game is what we call warm up for cricket.
A warm up consist of light cardio activities.
What Happens in a Warm Up?
Warm Up session include:
- Cardio activities includes walking, jogging, running, stair climbing etc.
- Stretches includes calf, triceps, shoulder stretches and etc.
- Strength Drills include four station, ground fielding etc.
- Light Exercises includes pushups, squats, rotation etc.
Importance of Warming Up in Cricket:
Some of the benefits of doing warm up are:
- Reduce injury chances
- Prepares the body for the physical activity
- Improves practical skills
- Mentally prepare the player for the game ahead
- Increases blood flow to the muscles
Basics of Cricket Warm Up
- Basic Cricket Warm Up includes:
- Light Stretching with particular Emphasis on
- Lower back
- Calf Muscles etc.
How to Warm Up for Cricket
- Running between the Wickets
- Fielding Drills
- Building Team Spirit
- Team Meeting lead by Captain
List of Warm Up Exercises for Cricket
First stage of cricket warm up
- We do Jogging; Jogging will increase your pulse rate and body temperature.
- We play a game of rugby or football, they also increase pulse rate (this is done when we do not go for jogging).
Second stage of cricket warm up
- We do Arm Rotations; this is recommended for fast bowlers. Rotate your arm in all direction which are possible and then slowly increase the speed of rotation. Perform this for 5 minutes. As we all know that, nowadays bowlers bowl with the speed of up to 90 mph/144 kmph. So the warming up before bowling is very important.
- Now we do Hugs; this is done to warm back muscles. Hug yourself very tightly and then try to clap your hand and then again hug yourself. Perform this for 2-5 minutes.
- Now we do Front Kicks; this is done to lengthen the muscles in the back of the legs. Put your one hand horizontally straight in air till your shoulder and try to kick your hand with your one leg.
- Now we do Squats; go down as low as you can and put your hands in air horizontally straight. Perform for 3-4 minutes.
- Now we do Seated Torso Twists; sit on the floor, bring your legs close to each other and then put your one leg over other leg and then try to twist the waist while keeping your one hand close to the armpits.
- Now we do Shoulder Raise; stand or sit with a dumbbell or anything that is heavy and easy to handle. Keep your back straight and then slowly lifts the weights until your arms are parallel to the floor or until you reach the shoulder level.
List of Stretches to be done before playing cricket
- Seated Trapezius Stretch – Put your right hand over your head then bends your head towards right and be in that position for some seconds and then do it for left side.
- Cross Body Shoulder Stretch– Bring your right hand up to shoulder level and move it across your body and then use your left hand and pull the right hand as much close to the chest and hold in that position for 30 seconds and then do it for left hand.
- Triceps Stretch – Raise your right hand over your head and then bend your elbows and touch the right hand to the left side of the shoulder, use your left hand to make the right hand as much close to the left shoulder and hold in the position for 15 – 30 seconds and then repeat this for left hand and try to reach the right shoulder.
- Lying Hamstring Stretch – Lie on the floor and bend your left leg 90 degrees and then slowly raise your right leg as much straight as possible use your hand to make the right leg straight. Hold in that position for 30 seconds and then repeat the steps for left leg.
- Quadriceps Stretch – Stand straight keeping your legs close to each other and then slowly bend your right leg in backwards direction. Do not allow your posture to bend in forward and try to stand straight. Hold in that position for 30 seconds and then repeat the steps for left leg.
- Seated Calf Stretch – Sit on the floor with legs straight and then lean forward and grab the arches of your feet and then pull your toes towards your body until you feel a stretch. Hold in that position for 10 seconds and then repeat the steps for other leg.
List of Drills that are done before playing cricket
Drills for Batting
- Back Foot Defense: Bring your front foot towards your back foot and stand straight and look towards the bowler. Then move your bat in forward direction keeping the front elbow in high position and bat angle should be slightly towards the ground and then make contact with the ball.
- Back Foot Drive: Head , shoulder and back foot moves back close to the wicket and stand at an angle of 30 degrees and then when the ball comes towards you then make your body in straight position and then move your front foot towards backwards and move your hands above vertically up and contact to the ball.
- Front Foot Defense: Stand straight till the ball reaches you and then move your front foot in forward direction and bend it from the knee and then move your bat perpendicular to the ground and make contact with the ball.
- Off Drive: Stand Straight till the ball reaches you and when the ball is about to reach raise your bat with a high backswing, put your front foot in forward direction and hit the ball vertically and make contact with the ball.
- Straight Drive: Stand Straight till the ball reaches and then when the ball is about to reach you bring your front foot in forward direction and bend the front knee and then hit the ball hard making your bat perpendicular to the ground.
Drills for Catching
- Catching: Two players should stand in opposite direction parallel to each other and then throw the ball to each other and see how many catches they can make in a given period of time.
- Short Catching: There will be a team of 4-5 players practicing this drill. One player will stand behind the wicket and other players will stand at the other wicket end in a row. The player standing behind the wicket will throw the ball towards the first player on the other side and then that player will give back the ball to the player behind the wicket and then he will stand at the end o the row ad this will continue for some given period of time.
- Catch Relay: There will be a pair of two players. Player 1 will throw the ball for player 2 to run and catch the ball. Then player 2 will throw back the back to player 1 and player 1 puts the ball down.
- High Catching: There will be two teams practicing this drill at a time. Each team will have 3-4 players. The first team will throw the ball high in the sky and the other team has to run and catch the ball and then they have to throw back the ball towards first team and this will continue for a period of time.
Drills for Fielding
- Stop the Ball: There will be a team practicing this drill. One player will throw the ball in a direction and the players standing opposite to the player will stop ball the before reaching the boundary line one by one. This will continue for a period of time.
- Make a run out: There will be a team practicing this drill. One player will stand behind the wickets and the player will throw the ball and other players will try to hit the wicket directly or throwing the ball as fast as they can to the player standing behind the wicket one by one.
Drills for Bowling
- Away Swing Bowlers- Grip: The first two fingers of the hand are placed on top of the ball and the thumb is placed underneath the ball. Then make the swing in the air away from the batsman and keep the seam vertical.
- Hitting a target: A player will stand behind the wicket and the bowlers will stand at the other end of the pitch and they will try to hit the wicket with the ball one by one. This will continue for a period of time.
- Leg spin: The little finger and the thumb are at the sides of the ball and middle, index and ring finger is spread well across the ball. Now take a run up and bend your wrist when you bring the ball to release and then roll the ball with hand and throw the ball.
How to Prevent Injuries in Cricket
Some Common injuries that happen during cricket match are:
- Strain ( Side or intercostal strain)
- Sprains (Ankle Sprain)
- Rotator cuff injury
- Lower Back pain
Precautions to be taken to avoid above injuries are:
- Do proper Exercises includes Drills, stretches etc.
- Wear proper gear includes wear helmets, padding etc.
- Work on your throwing techniques so that when you through the ball, it doesn’t lead to any type of Injury.
- Play in a safe environment includes pitch is smooth and clean , remove all the stones from the pitch etc.
- Don’t play in extreme heat conditions.
Keeping warm during a game of cricket
In hot weather how to warm during the game:
- Keep Jumping and rotating your position that will increase blood circulation in your body.
- Stay hydrated: Drink as much water as the player can so that the player will not feel fatigue or headache.
- Clothes that the player wears should be of loose fitting.
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In cold weather how to warm during the game:
- Wear full sleeves sweater or a sleeveless sweater (slipover).
- Keep rotating your position so that blood circulation is good.
Cricket Warm Up Exercises PDF
Click on the button to download PDF file of warm up exercises for cricket.
- You should try to avoid injuries.
- Take coach advice before doing any exercise or drill or stretches.
- Do Proper Warm Up before the match.
- Start doing your warm up at least 1 hour before the match starts.