The complete guide to cricket fitness | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

The complete guide to cricket fitness

There are not many certainties in club cricket, especially when it comes to making runs and taking wickets. However, one thing you can be sure of is that the fitter you are, the better you will perform on the pitch at the weekend.

Cricket fitness, though, can a complicated and difficult subject. You just have to look at the hundreds of personal trainers, fitness books and strange looking equipment available to know it's a confusing world.

I'm here to unpick the facts from snake oil so you don't waste a moment of your precious time on useless training. Plus you get the added benefit of feeling and looking good. So here is the complete course on cricket fitness, including drills:

Part 1: Introduction

Part 2: Planning

Part 3: Conditioning

Part 4: Strength, Speed and Power

Part 6: Position Specific

Part 7: Injury Prevention

Part 8: Other Fitness Tips

I will regularly update this page, so keep checking back and don't forget to subscribe for free.


If you want a more comprehensive guide to reducing injury risk and increasing cricket specific fitness, check out county strength coach Rob Ahmun's guide on PitchVision Academy.


© Copyright miSport Holdings Ltd 2008


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[...] One of the critical elements in a batsman’s fitness development is the strength of his legs. [...]

[...] On top of this, rings are a very tough workout. This means you would be much fitter than everyone else on the field giving you a major advantage (and also not a solution for beginners). [...]

[...] Lift weights. Strength training reduces your risk of injury on the cricket pitch, makes you a more powerful player and boosts your metabolism far more than sitting on a stationary bike. It’s a great time to start working on your strength for the start of the season and if you weight train 3 times a week the fat will come off in plenty of time for April. [...]

This is exactly what I expected to find out after reading the title omplete guide to cricket fitness : Play Better Cricket - Thanks for informative article

[...] ensure players are working on their running speed, agility and throwing power as part of their fitness training. Players who have the confidence of being fast and throwing well are less likely to snap under a [...]

This web site has everything in detail, i am happy to note that such web site every coach should read and get themself updated to the new ways of training. I really appreciate the efforts put by you people to get us to know new ways of coaching.


Thanks Anil, I hope it helps you play better cricket

Wow, that's a bunch of great resources!

I don't play cricket, but you lay out some good basic fitness and nutrition tips that would be good for almost anyone looking to do a different workout.

You could probably bunch that all together into an e-book and sell it to cricket players!


Thanks Jeremy, I think that's a result of basing my advice on universal principles not quick fix gimmicks.

Hi, i am looking for a cricket fitness trainers to work with our team this winter and summer. Need somebody 1 to 2 days a week. Ilford Cricket club essex area.

Plesaew could you help locate someone or put me in the right direction.


I have mailed you Tash Smiling

does ne1 no the macronutrients and the mirconutrients u need for cricket??

Liam - the glib answer is: All of them! Are we discussing macronutrient ratios though?

no i just need to know which 1s u need for my college nutrition assignment and also for my cricket

Well, you really do need them all. Macronutrients are protein, carbohydrate and fat. You need all three for different reasons.

There are many more micronutrients. Drop me an email with the question if you like.


what are the reasons we need the macronutrients for cricket and which micronutrients are needed for cricket?

Have you not already asked me this Liam?

no i need the reason y we need the macronutrients i asked wat they r n i also need the micronutrients we need and why we need them

I'm not sure what you are driving at Liam. Can you email me with the exact question please? I'll take a look properly then.

[...] Heck, even this site contributes to the noise by offering you a dizzying array of tips and tricks to improve your cricket fitness. [...]

Hello.Iam 21 years old and desperately want to become a fast bowler.till now i have not undertaken any coaching.please tell how to improve my fitness for fast bowling and if i join coaching now will i be able to become a good bowler

please reply to my query

Well krishna, you could try reading the posts listed above?

[...] trains for fitness at least 3 times a week and knows the importance of strength training. He might use the gym weights, his own set at home or train with bodyweight. He is not afraid of [...]

I'm looking for new ideas with regards to a winter fitness programme for u/15 cricketers. We train once a week,starting in July with fitness testing and training and we only start with the skills training in September.

Please advise!

Nathaniel, drop me an email with the details.

please sent the different types cricketing shots of verious players photos
thanking you

bcoz my coaching camp small city in dharwad state: karnatak(india)i m creating small software in cricket coaching camps bcoz i want to different types of players photos and there shots.

Player assessment question. Example: - How do you assess an U 19 opening batsman ( slightly heavy kid but excellent skills) who consistently scores runs in his age group in competitive cricket? He has great temperament and bats long hours since under 15 days. And he does well in fitness tests and is a strong lad. But some people get the impression that he is slow between wickets, but the guy continues to get runs and is a decent fielder. Are we going wrong in the assessment of players with this stereotype that a player must be slim to succeed at the next level? What is the ultimate tool for measuring a batsman? Runs right?

to the guy above
just becuz hes a bit heavy doesnt mean nothin. imagine wat he could do if he muscled up and toned down. I was a bit overweigt, not much but enough to hold me bak,last season, before i started playing rugby league. But wat i have learnt is just run. plain and simple.
good luck in the future

Runs are the ultimate tool. Fitness is an important element in a holistic approach to skill. That's really the key message of micoach.


As newly registered user i only want to say hello to everyone else who uses this forum <:-)

Welcome along Brissioft

i have been asked to train Cricketers over the next few months i am the fitness manager of a sport centre but also teach spin body pump circuits etc they want to do spin pump and circuit is this ok as i want to make sure its specific to them

Julie McClymont

For my A Level PE i am analysing my performance in cricket. I have to provide the exam board with a 8 week training plan for an elite performer in cricket. Please can you outline how an elite performer would train. This would be much appreciated. Thanks

You should really look at the work of Rob Ahmun, he is the Strength coach for Glamorgan CCC. You can get his advice here

Hi I play competitive cricket and I am a batsman. Been playing Rugby as well so my fitness work is all rugby based, with squats, powercleans, deadlifts etc and conditioning work. Obviously cricket fitness is not really as hard as rugby and rugby requires more strength and power with speed. People say I am too heavy for cricket although I am stronger and definitely not slower than most cricketers I play with. My aerobic fitness is also good enough and I recover really quick. Would you say that these people who are looking for leaner players for cricket are wrong?? My batting balance is very good as I have strong legs and back with the weight training. I mean cricket is a weaker man's sport so why cannot rugby fitness be more than good enough for cricket??

A study done in 2003 showed that the physiological demands of cricket are as high as rugby. The main difference is the higher injury rate in rugby which you would expect as a full contact sport with little protection.

Thanks David, I read that in one study done by Noakes in South Africa. It said that "some" SA cricketers were as fit as the the SA Ruby team players. But you have not answered my question. Does my Rugby training make me fit enough for cricket? I can run 40 yards in 5 secs ( hand timed) and also run my 3s between wickets in 8.2 secs. I am 5 feet 10 and 200 pounds. Can squat below parallel 220 pounds for 5 reps and Deadlift a little more weight. Power Clean 110 pounds and Bench 160 pounds for 5. I do a total of about 9600 yards of shuttle runs at 80 percent pace every week. I am 18 years old and can surely get stronger. So why is leaner better for cricket??

It sounds like to know the answer to your own question. What do you feel?

One proviso I would make is that cricket is not just about how fast you can run or how strong you are. those are important for preventing injury and athletic performance, but skill must sit on top of strength, power and mobility or it is nothing.

To answer your question about why lean is better is a harder one. First we have to define what 'lean' means. I would say lean and strong are not opposite things. I think of lean has having lower body fat levels but you can still be strong with low body fat.

That said, there is a myth that being strong means being 'bulky' or 'slow' or inflexible this is just untrue. The sprinter Bolt is very strong and he is very fast for example.

One final point is that your strength and power need to be able to crossover onto the cricket pitch. Rugby is more of a 'strength-speed' sport: You need to put a lot of force into tacking a heavy opponent or pushing in the scrum. More weight less speed. Cricket is more 'speed-strength'. you need to swing a bat or bowl/throw a ball at high speed: More speed less weight. So your training needs to reflect that with less very heavy training (although some is important) and more 'speed-strength' work (med balls, plyometrics etc).

Ok David, the simple question was does my rugby training keep me fit enough for cricket?

The question is on fitness for cricket.

Forget my body fat levels and body shape I am fit enough for Rugby standards.

The med ball work and plyos are part of rugby conditioning including shuttle runs.

what I feel is what I mentioned in my earlier post.

Cricket skill is another topic.

So can you give me a straight answer - why is lean better for cricket?

You have answered your own first question rugbycricket. I believe you know the answer already. Don't you?

As to your 2nd question - why is lean better - I can't give you a straight answer because our definitions of "lean" and "better" may be totally different. Perhaps you can tell me what you mean by lean and what your definition of better is? Then I can help. Although I suspect you already know the answer already.

Sure I know the answer. fit enough for Rubgy makes me fit enough for cricket.

I am asking you because you are a coach and want to know how you assess a player?

Because most cricket coaches want leaner players and are prejudiced against bigger lads even some one strong and fit like me.

The definition of lean to the human eye means slim with less fat. Muscle is also considered excess weight by cricket coaches.

I am a heavy guy at 200 pounds with but I can run my 40 yards in 5 secs and conditioned from Rugby training.

I run my 3 s between wickets in less than 9 seconds as well.

So why should I fit into a stereo type of being leaner for cricket?

Don't cricketers some in different body types?

Or has it become so much of a visual TV sport that cricketers need to be slim like figure models?

It does not seem to be related performance but appearance.

Personally I assess a player based on runs and wickets.


The only thing you need to concern yourself with is being fit. The type of fitness work you are doing should be more than adequte for cricket. You can still weigh 90 kilograms or so, but you must be fit with low body fat levels. Mathew Hayden is a big fella, built like a brick wall, and undoubtebly very strong. He turned out to be a fine batsman. However, you would not want to be a big guy and have the fitness levels of Mark Cosgrove, who was a batsman for the South Australian state team that got dropped for being unfit just last year. He was more in the mould of a David Boon.

These days the David Boon body types with the beer belly and poor fitness levels wont be able to get away with it, at least not in professional cricket.

In my opinion, the heavier fellas need to look at someone like Matt Haydney as a decent body type. And I think they key thing here is fat levels. I would be quite sure that Hayden would have very low fat levels.

Thats a good assessment.

Mark Cosgrove has been seriously overweight and has a huge belly. Thats not acceptable for me nor my girl friends lol

Although I think he is very talented.

I am more like Mathew Hayden and while my friends think its cool some cricket coaches are obsessed about me getting leaner and assume I am slower. I can run 3s between wickets in less than 9 seconds and my 40 yard dash is in 5 seconds so no way am I slow.

My body fat level is about 18 percent and I am just 18 yrs. Sure I can work towards dropping some more fat but my point was I am already very fit for cricket from my rugby work. But I am going to keep training.

hi sir i'm too slow in sprint and running between the wickets can you advice any drills to improve my running speed my hight is 166cm and weight is 68kg

Take a look in Part 4 for some tips and drills.

sir pls tell me how to increse my endurance

Please send me a diet chart

You can get one from the excellent guys at Precision Nutrition

you should try warrior diet

You say heavy weight training is good bu professional cricketers dont lift heavy weights because that is what bodybuilders do you should be doing medium weight but more reps the better that will male you lean and strong

Don't be silly. The professionals do lift heavy weights, I've worked with pro players and strength coaches.

hi david, please can you tell me best exercises for fast bowlers to increase speed, eg squats and also other training and how often . thanks

It's all in the guide ali.

How do you know cricketers lift heavy weights? and which teams are you refering to?

All teams will do various weight exercises, including the use of heavy weights. You have to remember that just because the word 'heavy' is used it does not necessarily imply that people using those weights are going to look like body builders.

Most closely with Glamorgan.

Perhaps I should say that heavy weights are best for certain things. You don't need to be doing 1RM efforts with your rotator cuff work!

You also don't want a high volume, body part split bodybuilder style training plan.

Also, weight training must be combined with other methods - speed work, power work, mobility, conditioning, skill work and flexibility.

But performance and injury prevention is tied to strength and to get stronger you need to, eventually, lift heavy.


Hi David,
could you work out a daily routine to improve my pace aand accuracy.please tell me a step by step training schedule to work out and i will work very hard to improve my pace and accuracy.Dooooooooooooooooon't tell me to buy any coaching books as i am planning to buy one after some days.

Hi David,
could you work out a daily routine to improve my pace aand accuracy.please tell me a step by step training schedule to work out and i will work very hard to improve my pace and accuracy.Dooooooooooooooooon't tell me to buy any coaching books as i am planning to buy one after some days.

The best most specific program u can do is my program on here or my own website SPEED DEMON program. Dont waste time looking for something else, seriosly.

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