Cups got in touch to ask,
"How can we prevent side strains while bowling? Is it a biomechanical issue or weak muscles and if so what needs to be strengthened?"
Well Cups, side strains are common because of a number of factors. The two most preventable ones in my experience are technique and core strength.
So in fact, it's both.
Technically, you put a lot of strain on your sides if you have an action that "falls away". That is to say, your head is outside the line of your front foot, like this young man:
If this happens to you, your chances of injury are higher. However correcting the problem is not easy. It's caused by one or more of:
- Not running in a straight line (a curved or kinked run up).
- The front arm comes down outside your body.
- The bowling arm goes out to the side instead of straight back.
You can correct these and in fact Ian Pont can help you correct them all with his How to Bowl Faster online course. Yes, speed and a good action go hand in hand!
In terms of coorse strength, you don't need sit ups as these just add to the pressure you put in your midsection. Instead look at "anti rotation" and "anti flexion" core exercises as part of an overall strengthening routine.
This will help you resist the forces that cause injuries.
Put the two together and you are helping yourself stay on the park. Good luck Cups!