Generating power in classic strokes is all about timing. Which is why people like Ganguly & Rohit Sharma can push through the offside and the ball would race to the boundary...like a tracer bullet!
Rohit Sharma has been quoted saying - "you need timing, not muscles" when questioned on his art of hitting sixes. With nine centuries including a Test double, eight half-centuries, 201 fours, and 66 sixes in 2019 - you couldn't argue against that.
In this post we breakdown the essentials of timing the ball well with a guided step-by-step tutorial to show you how you can generate more power from each of your strokes. From gully cricket to T20 to the classic formats, power in your strokes can single-handedly change a game!
Step 1 - Watching The Ball
- Getting more power in your strokes, is all about timing! First off, the most important thing is to watch the ball
- Once you know the ball is overpitched or short and there to be hit, take either a full stride forward or backfoot stride to adjust yourself to the length
- What’s important is you feel comfortable and balanced in either of these positions. When going forward your weight should be on the front leg & when going back it should be on the back leg
Step 2 - Keeping Your Head Still, In Position
- Your head position should be extremely still, this allows you to maintain your balance and watch the ball right on to the bat
- Keeping your head still will also help you to keep your eyes on the ball and judge swing or spin better
Step 3 - Playing The Ball Late & Close To The Body
- You should play the ball as late as you can. Or as close to your body. What this does is 2 things
- Your hit the ball where the bat speed is maximum
- You’re never losing control of your position
But what about bat speed? We hear so much about fast hands in cricket.
Once you have mastered the technique, you should focus on generating max bat speed. To increase bat speed there is a simple drill you can use
- Repeatedly play the shot with only your front arm. This builds your fore-arm muscles and builds muscle memory of the shot in your mind. Both these will help you increase your bat speed
But remember, no matter how good your bat speed. Unless you effective with your weight transfer, have a still head and play close to the body, you will waste energy without generating enough power.
These will help improve your balance and weight transfer.
A very helpful exercise is the Squat. Squats can be done freely or weighted. The important thing in this exercise is form. Begin by placing your feet a little more than waist-length apart, with the toes pointing slightly outwards. Then gradually bring your body down, pushing down and outwards from the glutes. Once at the bottom, push yourself up through the balls of your feet. This exercise helps strengthen a series of muscles including the legs and the core, where most of your power comes from.
Questions, comments, suggestions? Drop them in the comment box below!