What are the new Dexa scan tests that will determine Indian cricketers’ fitness levels?

Having a list of 20 players who will be the plan for the 50 World Cup to be held later this year, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has decided to bring a special training method and protocol for each player.

In a review meeting on the T20 World Cup 2022 disaster team held in Mumbai attended by BCCI president Roger Binny, secretary Jay Shah, captain Rohit Sharma, head coach Rahul Dravid and NCA head of cricket VVS Laxman, the board has also re-introduced the Yo-Yo test and Dexa scan results as criteria for selection. There will be a customized roadmap for each player to follow, including during their stint with an IPL franchise, in the summer before the World Cup.

The Yo-Yo Test is not new for the Indian team as it was first brought before the 2019 World Cup during the Virat Kohli-Ravi Shastri era.

The start was not well received by the players as the likes of Ambati Rayudu, Suresh Raina, Prithvi Shaw, Varun Chakravarthy, Sanju Samson and Mohammed Shami all failed to clear the Yo-Yo test at different times.

But when the players started to see the difference on the field, especially in terms of agility and movement, they increased the desired Yo-Yo test score from 16.1 to 17. However, in the post-pandemic world, with the Covid protocol. , the team chose a 2km run test (in 7.30 minutes) to use as a fitness parameter.

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Now with several key players injured despite being well rested, the board is back to the Yo-Yo test. In the past, players had to clear the Yo-Yo test score of 17. “You say business that 18 is for batters and 19 for fast bowlers,” said Ramji Srinivasan, former strength and conditioning coach of the victorious Indian team. World Cup in 2011 and Champions Trophy in 2013 said. “Things are evolving and you have to follow the trends. There are parameters, so just relying on Yo-Yo will not do. Skill-based programs should also be included,” said Ramji.

According to Ramji, the Dexa scan test was something recommended by the BCCI and NCA in 2011 due to the increased number of matches played in a year. Through the Dexa test, trainers will be able to measure body fat percentage, lean muscle mass, water content and bone density.

“It helps you know where the fat is and what training methods produce results. It’s all linked to the cycle. This is part of the test protocol that should be mandatory again. Some teams have been doing this for 10 years. It’s a fool-proof method. Skinfold can be manipulated and each different result can be shown. But with Dexa it will be uniform and the data will be used for the future as well,” said Ramji.

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The ideal body fat of a football player is 5-8 pc; for cricket, 10 pc

It is understood that the BCCI has opted for a more scientific method as certain players hide their niggles and rush back from injuries. This will not only give responsibility to the players, but also the responsibility of the coach. For example, the fat content should be less than 10 percent. If it’s 10-12, you’re borderline fit. Football players will be between 5-8 percent. But cricket can expand up to 10. Less fat means more muscle mass and can provide strength, power, speed, agility and less tension in the joints, less stiffness in the muscles. This way you can prevent back and knee injuries,” added Ramji.

Incidentally, a back injury ruled Jasprit Bumrah out of the T20 World Cup, while Ravindra Jadeja missed out due to a knee injury. With a more customized plan, each player will now have a routine, diet program and training methods to follow depending on the results of the Dexa scan.

“Each player has his own program as the way to do it. This also happened before,” said Ramji. “What suits one player may not suit another and must be different and adjusted and this is one way to prevent injuries.”

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Be it the T20 World Cup 2021 or the latest edition in November 2022, India took the field without their key players and had a definite impact. Especially in Australia, India were without Bumrah and Jadeja – two players who will be straight into the playing XI – due to a rush of last-minute changes. This means India are back to Shami, who is not part of the T20 World Cup plans until September for the tournament to be played in October-November.

Then there’s the case of players who often break down due to fitness-related injuries. Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar are cases in point as the duo missed a lot of matches last year due to various injuries at different points. After failing to win an ICC title since claiming the Champions Trophy in 2013, the BCCI has turned its attention to the 50-over World Cup to be held in India.

For a team with a huge talent pool and the glamor of the IPL, failure to win the World Cup on home soil will not be received well. In this context, India knows that to make a winning combination, they need to have the right squad and so it seems they have pressed the action button by bringing in the Yo-Yo test and the Dexa scan test.


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