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It's not as exciting as fast bowling or scoring hundreds, but protein is a big factor in the life of all cricketers at all levels. We give you the low down this week and keep it as simple possible without oversimplifying.

In fact, that's kinda the philosophy of this newsletter!

In the spirit we also show you how to get out of a slump, teach introverts the best way to play cricket and take a look at some of the lesser known terms that you will hear your coach discuss.

Could it unlock the secrets of your technique?

There's only one way to find out... get stuck in!

Have a great weekend,

David Hinchliffe

The Protein Cheat Sheet for Cricketers

Protein will help your cricket.

It's not as important as technical ability, physical fitness and tactical nous, but it has a role. As you are going to eat protein anyway, you may as well make the most of what it can do for you on the pitch.

The good news is that it's not difficult.

There's no weighing of chicken breasts and measuring out macro nutrient breakdowns. Sure, you can do those things if you have a specific reason. For the average cricketer you simply need to dial into the basics and get on with playing God's own game.

Here is a quick and dirty summary of the stuff you need to know about protein for cricket.


You need protein

Let's bust a common myth before we go on: everyone needs protein.

It's used by your body to produce important enzymes, hormones, neurotransmitters, and antibodies. Protein helps replace cells allowing you to self-repair. It also is an important element in controlling body fat. Without these things you would be fat and sick.

That much is not in debate in the nutrition community.

Where there is some difference of opinion is how much protein you need.

How much protein is right for cricket?

Research has show that to stave off illness you need about 0.8g of protein per kg in body weight. Or, in layman's terms "not very much".

If you play cricket, train and workout regularly, this number goes up to about 2g/kg.

This jump up allows for a lot more benefits including increased athletic performance, reduced body fat and better immune function.

Or, again in layman's terms: Eat a good portion of lean protein at every meal. Types of lean protein are chicken, turkey, beef, eggs, milk and fish. You can also get protein from veggie sources; especially beans, nuts, grains and spirulina.

If you stopped there and did nothing else, well done you are about right.

But there are some further nuances that you can use to get even better.

Protein supplements for cricket

There is a lot of hype around supplements, so the first thing to do is disregard all marketing. It's not aimed at you anyway. There is certainly no requirement to use powders if you want to be better at cricket.

Supplementing with protein powder is traditionally associated with bodybuilders. It's more commonly accepted in cricket now as professionals have been using supplements for a few years and it is filtering into the lower levels of the game.

We know it helps through the same reasons as above.

There are various types of protein on sale and there are some small differences (for example whey is more quickly digested than casein meaning that whey is better before and after training). These differences don't make enough of a difference to a cricketer to be significant.

A good whey, or possibly blend protein that tastes OK is fine to use. At worst it will do no harm, and best it is a convenient way to get protein in around times when you can't have a meal (like during a game).

Feel free to delve more into the world where amnio acid types and BCAA's are part of the picture if you really want, but I would personally think it's better to just get to the nets with a bog standard bottle of chocolate flavour whey.

Extra protein advice for cricketers


  • Spread your protein out throughout the day to supply a steady stream to your body. This is especially important during game day where protein is broken down further than normal when batting and bowling.
  • Get some protein in before and after matches. Protein powder is a good solution for this, but not essential.
  • If you are concerned about your protein intake, track what you eat for 2 weeks and see if you are getting 2g/kg. If not, step it up!
  • It's hard to eat too much protein, but a lot easier to not get enough, so err on the side of more.

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Cure the Mid Season Slump with These Simple Tips

Everyone wants to finish their season with some strong performances so they can w̶a̶l̶l̶o̶w̶ ̶i̶n̶ ̶n̶o̶s̶t̶a̶l̶g̶i̶a̶ ̶f̶o̶r̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶ ̶l̶o̶n̶g̶ ̶w̶i̶n̶t̶e̶r̶ ̶p̶e̶r̶i̶o̶d̶ help their side complete their targets.

I know that many of your players will feel that this is completely out of their reach as they are stuck in a mid-season slump with the ball or the bat. Without intervention, a player relies on luck to get them back into form yet with appropriate mental and technical a player can be back on track for a late season purple patch.

Here are some mental tips that have worked for me with players as they go from slump to superstar.


The starting point is perspective

Reinforce to the player that poor "form" is not a weird thing; it happens very frequently to all high level performers. The players is not strange.

In fact when - not if - the player sorts this out they will become a stronger and more resilient character. This will ultimately make them a better player.

"When" can be as soon as tomorrow, if you let it and want it.

As Nietsche said:

"what does not kill me makes me stronger".

Secondly, in the match situation a players goals should shift from runs and wickets and move to a combination of:

  • Enjoyment. Both the player and the coach should be reflecting and reviewing about things that the player enjoyed during their innings or in their spell. Little things can make a big difference.
  • Feel. It could be the pace in the run up, the sound of the feet hitting the crease in delivery stride or the sense that your contacts have come back closer to the body, whatever it is is down to the player, yet a shift from "outcome" to "feel" often helps players to free their mind and then their body movements. Form returns.

I remember back to one of the slumps in my own career and a shift I made one day when I scored only 4 runs. I really enjoyed the way I played a solid forward defensive against the oppositions fastest bowler. I took that sense enjoyment into my next practice and my "form" came back the following game.

It's important that there are no measurement targets placed on the player until the player comes back to the game, feelings and confidence that they are usual known for. The last thing a player recovering from slump needs is extra outcome pressure.

Work on getting a perspective back into your game, enjoy the little "wins" along the road to recovery, reconnect with the feel of your game bit by bit and refrain from thinking too hard about measurements or targets.

This will give any player a roadmap to follow was they kickstart their end of season flourish.

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Cricket Show S5 Episode 32: Free Weight vs. Bodyweight

What is best for fitness training, bodyweight or machines?

That's one of the questions in the show that has been put to the team of Mark Garaway, Sam Lavery and David Hinchliffe. The answer is in the show, along with some cooking tips from Lavers.

Plus the team discuss the importance of the hips in spin bowling, and how to get rotation through the hips and into the ball to give it a rip.

All that and much more, ready for download. Listen now!


How to Send in Your Questions

If you want to win a cricket coaching prize, you need to send in your burning questions to the show. If your question is the best one we give you a free online cricket coaching course!

Send in your questions via:

Or you can call and leave your question on the Academy voice mail:

  • +44 (0)203 239 7543
  • +61 (02) 8005 7925

How to Listen to the Show

Just click the "play" button at the top of the article.

Or, the show comes out every Friday and you can listen to it on your computer, smart phone or tablet every week automatically. Simply choose your favourite podcast player and do a search for the show:

Or subscribe manually with the RSS feed. Right click here, copy the link and paste it into the appropriate place for adding new feeds in your podcast subscription software or RSS reader.

You can also download this show onto your computer by clicking the play button at the top of the article, or clicking on the mp3 to download.


This is show number 275.

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The Introvert's Guide to Thriving in Cricket

Do you recognise this in yourself, Mr/Miss Introverted Cricketer?

You want to be left alone to get on with your role. As a result you tend to be slightly apart from the team. You're not especially interested in the social side of the game, you prefer the challenge set to you by trying to score runs or take wickets.

And as for contributing to the team overall tactics or culture, you have deep and well-considered opinions that you keep very quiet about. Team meetings are a chore and you avoid them at all costs.

You thrive under your own steam.

This can come across - especially to the more socially minded players - as uptight, over-serious or maybe even rude: Think the classic accusation that "he only plays for his average".

You know it's just the way you are wired. So here are some ways to keep the social secretary happy whilst also contributing to the side as a team player and an individual.

Unlock Your Coaches' Code to Boost Your Cricket

Has your coach ever said something to you that you don't quite get?

Don't you feel like you are missing out because you can't decode it?

You are not alone.


About PitchVision Academy

Welcome to this week's guide to playing and coaching better cricket.

I'm David Hinchliffe and I'm Director of the PitchVision Academy team. With this newsletter you are benefitting directly from over 25 Academy coaches. Our skills include international runs and wickets, first-class coaching, cutting-edge research and real-life playing experience.


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Issue: 321
Date: 2014-08-22