INJURY PREVENTION FOR FAST BOWLERS
These directives apply to girls and boys, and any reference to he/his should be interpreted to include she/her.
For the purpose of these Directives a fast bowler should be defined as a bowler to whom a wicket keeper in the same age group would in normal circumstances stand back to take the ball. All coaches are urged to identify those players with the potential to bowl fast and to insure they follow the Directives in all cricket throughout the season.
There are four main areas to be aware of when assessing injury risk to fast bowlers:
3. Physical Preparation
This is an important consideration especially for young bowlers whose bodies are not fully developed. Recent studies have revealed that overbowling is the most common cause of back injuries in this country. Evidence suggest that much of the damage occurs early in the playing career, and especially during growth spurts, though the effects do not often show themselves until the late teens. The more talented and more physically mature youngsters are generally most at risk, as they tend to play at more than one age group level.
To ensure that young fast bowlers do not place undue stress on their bodies, every attempt must be made to keep the amount of bowling within reasonable limits. The following Directives provide sensible playing and training levels.
DIRECTIVES FOR MATCHES:
|AGE:||MAX OVERS PER SPELL||MAX OVERS PER DAY|
|Up to 13||5 overs per spell||10 overs per day|
|U14, U15||6 overs per spell||12 overs per day|
|U16, U17||7 overs per spell||18 overs per day|
|U18, U19||7 overs per spell||18 overs per day|
DIRECTIVES FOR PRACTICE SESSIONS:
|AGE:||MAX BALLS PER SESSION||MAX SESSIONS PER WEEK|
|Up to 13||30 balls per session||2 sessions per week|
|U14, U15||36 balls per session||2 sessions per week|
|U16, U17||36 balls per session||3 sessions per week|
|U18, U19||42 balls per session||3 sessions per week|
These figures are based on players bowling in no more than 3 matches or practice session per week for age groups up to and including U15, and 4 matches or practice sessions per week for age groups up to and including U19. Players can play in other matches provided they do not bowl.
Having completed a spell the bowler cannot bowl again, from either end, until the equivalent number of overs to the length of his spell have been bowled from the same end. If play is interrupted, for any reason, for less than 40 minutes any spell in progress at the time of the interruption can be continued after the interruption up to the maximum number of overs per spell for the appropriate age group. If the spell is not continued after the interruption the bowler cannot bowl again, from either end, until the equivalent number of overs to the length of his spell before the interruption have been bowled from the same end. If the interruption is of 40 minutes or more, whether scheduled or not, the bowler can commence a new spell immediately.
Once a bowler covered by these Directives has bowled in a match he cannot exceed the maximum number overs per day for his age group even if he subsequently bowls spin. He can exceed the maximum overs per spell if bowling spin, but cannot then revert to bowling fast until an equivalent number of overs to the length of his spell have been bowled from he same end. If he bowls spin without exceeding the maximum number of overs in a spell the maximum will apply as soon as he reverts to bowling fast.
The emphasis on all nets should be quality rather than quantity. These Directives will encourage young fast bowlers to focus their efforts on shorter, more intensive spells. Consequently young fast bowlers should be made aware of the importance of warming up and warming down as part of their preparation.
In the period between the end of the cricket season and Christmas, indoor practise for fast bowlers should be kept to an ABSOLUTE MINIMUM. The following highlights the risk of playing/practising on hard surfaces such as solid concrete and shows how these forces can be reduced by using appropriate mats or indeed by practising on grass. Concrete offers 0% force absorption whereas grass can offer up to 75%. The 34% offered by natural turf was measured at Trent Bridge on a rock hard Test Match pitch. These figures have major implications for limiting indoor work in the Winter, particularly for seamers, and for ensuring that length and intensity of sessions are considered when working on the harder surfaces.
Force Absorption and Surfaces:
|Concrete:||0% force reduction|
|Uniturf on concrete:||7% force reduction|
|Uniturf + mat:||15% force reduction|
|Uniturf+ 2 mats:||31% force reduction|
|Natural turf:||34% force reduction|
|Synthetic + underlay:||49% force reduction|