One thing that stood out in the recent world cup was that there is a massive difference between “Power Hitting” and “Big-Hitting”. Four years ago English players such Jason Roy, Jos Buttler and to a lesser extent Jonny Bairstow had the ability to hit the ball as hard as any of the big hitters in world cricket; players such as Dave Warner, AB de Villiers, Brendan McCullum, and Chris Gayle. On any given day when the ball was there to be hit most of these “Big Hitters” would send it flying over or across the boundary.
Fast forward four years.
What was evident in the big-hitting displayed by the same English players was that they were belting good balls for fours and sixes and they were consistently hitting boundaries from deliveries that were not there to be hit. Throughout the tournament all players except the English boys struggled to hit the slower ball, most defended deliveries that deviated off the wicket, most were stuck on the crease to the full-length yorker and most tentative against the teasing back of a length ball. Facing the same type of delivery the English players including Joe Root and Eoin Morgan, not normally known as “big-hitters”, were seen to be clearing the rope with shots that were not slogs, rather good cricket shots played with more power through impact.
Edgbaston comes to mind. Roy and Bairstow had dispatched the Australian Bowlers all over the park so Finch called upon Steve Smith to come on and bowl some leg-spin to try and take the pace off the ball. Jason Roy responded by hitting three enormous sixes in one over. Each was a well-timed well place cricket shot that displayed no apparent aggression. Rather, they were shots laced with power generated through the arms, torso and upper body developed during years of training using specialized Power Hitting Programs.
Power Hitting guru Julian Wood is contracted, as a freelance consultant, to work within the England squad as a Power Hitting Specialist. He has put a lot of work into the English players and the results were there for all to see during the World Cup. Power hitting is a completely new approach to how cricketers train and how they go about developing their technique for the shorter form of the game. Gone are the days of just rocking up to training for a hit and a bowl. Power Hitting and Power Surge Bowling programs require players to use different techniques and different equipment to assist with both “Power” and “Speed of Movement” development. England has benefited greatly from this and if other nations are going to challenge them in short-form cricket in the future then they need to start thinking outside of the square.
Power Hitting is a Scientific approach based on similar lines to the principles used in Baseball. Programs are designed to strengthen specific muscle groups as well as maintaining the speed of movement which is often reduced when muscle mass is gained. Overweight-underweight training forms the basis of the Power Hitting Methodology. Complimenting this is balance training and footwork which is vital to achieving resistance and power through shot play.
We at Force Train Better are committed to working with players and coaches alike to help develop individual or group Power Hitting & Surge Bowling Programs. To find out more email us at firstname.lastname@example.org