INTERVIEW | One size doesn’t fit all: ex-India trainer
Indian cricket has known better times apropos fitness of key players. Both Jasprit Bumrah and Shreyas Iyer have been ruled out for an indefinite period of time.
CHENNAI: Indian cricket has known better times apropos fitness of key players. Both Jasprit Bumrah and Shreyas Iyer have been ruled out for an indefinite period of time. The former’s injury is an additional concern as he has been away from competitive cricket for a good six months. This has of course invited a few stray comments from former cricketers, including the likes of Virender Sehwag who questioned the need for similar regimes for all players. In an interview with this daily, former India trainer, Ramji Srinivasan, pulls back the curtain.
On whether he agrees with Sehwag’s assessment (sports-specific and weight-training)
Yes, he’s spot on. As a strength and conditional coach, it’s our duty to train the players for a particular sport and specific to skill and specialised to each individual. One size does not fit all for sure. A bespoke periodised regime is a key to success. I think many got it wrong on what he (Sehwag) meant (he claimed weight training is the issue behind some of the injuries). There is a huge difference between the weight-lifting type of training and strength training. Weightlifting protocols are a different ball game, some exercises may cross over to strength training. Strength training is one component of fitness in any sport and is an essential component for developing power, speed, agility etc. The ratio of strength training to other components of fitness needs to be carefully planned and executed or it can create unwanted niggles which can turn into a serious injuries. Monitoring the right periodised regimen with the right form and load is paramount to peak at the right time. Many injuries happen due to the overload of just one component of fitness.
On the issues currently ailing Bumrah and Iyer
To be honest I really don’t know the reasons. It could be biomechanical issues or overloading or improper workload management or even improper recovery patterns or even the wrong exercise regimen. Players get injured for many reasons. Cannot blame the players for the erratic goof-up by some support staff.
On possible solutions
There are many ways to skin a cat; one is to have bespoke training protocols according to the game/skill/fitness levels/any injuries/format etc. A professional approach to current data collection with a proper inference of the data and teamwork is most critical. Repetitive injuries are a serious worry. The concerned professionals should sort this out at the earliest. End of the day, the S&C coach has to take some responsibility for it.
On yo-yo tests
It’s one of the tests. It absolutely is not the only protocol to determine players’ overall fitness levels. It can serve as a marker for the players to know their aerobic fitness levels and can be a tool to guide them to improve their aerobic fitness. There are other serious and pertinent components of fitness that need to be addressed than just yo-yo. Many embark on 2 or 2.4 k time trails to check the running and recovery fitness of the players. The components of fitness has to be in certain ratios. The testing needs to be skill specific.