The importance of sports in a person’s life cannot be understated. They are like the ultimate teacher of all life lessons and play a crucial role in shaping a person’s life in various ways. Team sports like football and cricket teach us the value of teamwork and how achieving something huge is a collective effort. You also learn about discipline and the importance of hard work and perseverance through sports. It teaches us that success is not handed out but earned through dedication and effort. Beyond teamwork, discipline, and efforts, it’s the health benefits of sports that have the biggest impact on a person’s life. Playing a sport contributes to our physical well-being, and mental happiness and also promotes a healthier diet and discipline ultimately leading to a healthier lifestyle, keeping fit, and reducing the risk of various health issues.
Cricket is one of the most played sports in the world and more than a billion people play it every day. Along with being a source of entertainment, it is also a way of staying healthy and fit. The life lessons that a player can learn from cricket, you can metaphorically call it life on the pitch.
In this article by ZAP, let’s explore the health benefits and the advantages and benefits of playing cricket:
Health Benefits Of Playing Cricket:
Endurance and Stamina:
Every cricket match, be it a friendly match or a formal T20, ODI, or 5-day test match, requires you to play to your best ability. Every player needs to maintain a high-intensity level for the entire duration of the match, which increases their capacity for endurance and boosts stamina.
Muscle Building and Overall Fitness:
The one important benefit of cricket is that everything you do requires a separate set of muscles, including running between the wickets, bowling a delivery, throwing a ball from the deep fielding position to the stumps, or squatting behind the stumps as a wicketkeeper. Along with them, there are various drills, exercises and gym workouts that you do to get better at the sport. All of this helps the body with its muscle building and provides it with the ideal shape. Cricket, without a doubt is one of the best workouts for building and toning muscle in the body and having a healthy and lean body.
Playing cricket is like the proper workout for your heart. Unlike football where you’re running nonstop, which creates a continuous stress on your lungs and gives you a high heart rate through the 90 minutes of the game, the benefit of cricket is that it involves evenly spaced peaks of high performance and rest. You can rest between each over and in general, not every fielder has to run behind the ball on every delivery. So there’s enough time to be in a rest position on the field. The heart benefits from gradual peaks that are followed by brief recoveries. These regular heart rate spikes and recoveries keep arteries and blood vessels from clogging.
Also Read: Football vs Cricket
The benefit of cricket is that when you play the sport, your body works out as a whole. It helps in the breakdown of fatty acids, and the body uses the energy released to power its functions. This increases metabolism and controls weight gain in a healthy way. Also, playing cricket burns about 290 calories per hour, which is a considerable amount and a good overall fitness workout.
10 Advantages and benefits of playing cricket:
Cricket can be a person’s first teacher:
The first gift for most kids in India is a plastic bat and ball and we basically grow up playing cricket from the very beginning. Be it in the gullies, box cricket, or the grounds. There’s so much to learn from this sport from such a young age. It instills the importance of showing teamwork and coordination and can be a child’s first teacher.
Cricket is a sport that constantly requires you to move, chasing the ball, fielding, and running between wickets, and they all provide a terrific cardiovascular workout that helps maintain a healthy heart and effective blood circulation.
Playing the sport requires all kinds of motions, from quick sprints to sudden change in direction and turns, all improves improves flexibility and explosivity. The constant batting drills, the footwork technique, and the batting stance practices, all help in creating flexibility in the lower body. Fast bowling requires you to have strong and flexible shoulders and hips, and bowling technique and fast bowling exercises help you to develop flexibility in the upper body.
Stress relief and mental well-being:
Another important benefit of playing cricket is that it offers a much-needed diversion from the stresses of everyday life. Playing this sport requires concentration, which helps people temporarily forget about their problems and improves mental health.
Focus and concentration development:
Focus is essential when fielding to stop runs or batting against a skilled bowler. You need to have a strong concentration on the game on each ball while wicket keeping behind the stumps and have a knack for grabbing onto those edges. This ability of being focused and concentrated on the work that you do have a good impact on many facets of life.
Team sports fostering camaraderie:
Cricket is a team sport by nature, encouraging cooperation and friendship. If a player has a bad day with the bat, there are other players to cover up for his runs. Similarly, a bowler might get hit for some extra runs in a match, but others are there to be economical and save runs for the team. Players form close relationships via their shared wins and losses, which fosters a positive social atmosphere.
Building friendships and networks
Joining a cricket academy or even going to the local grounds to play is a great way to create networks and lasting friendships. People from all walks of life come together through their common love for the sport, bridging social and cultural divides.
Social skills enhancement
In cricket, coordination, cooperation, and communication are crucial. On the pitch, players develop their social skills at the same time they plan and strategize, which is beneficial in a variety of real-world scenarios.
Team collaboration and cooperation
The benefit of cricket is that it highlights the value of cooperation. One batsman of the opening pair would take and aggressive approach, while the other would keep supporting him by rotating the strike and controlling the tempo of the game. This is how players learn to collaborate, relying on each other's strengths to achieve common goals. Every player on the team is equally important on the team’s success.
One benefit of cricket is how it helps develop hand eye coordination. Batting, fielding and catching require extraordinary hand-eye coordination. Continuous practice not only helps to develop your cricket skills but also refines your hand-eye coordination which benefits general coordination and reflexes.
Reflexes and agility:
Standing at the slips fielding position or behind the stumps as a wicket keeper, you just need quick reflexes to excel at the game. Playing the sport regularly improves agility and reflexes.
Strategic thinking and decision-making:
One of the biggest advantage and benefit of cricket is that it takes continuous thought to be good at the game. Whether it be bowlers setting up the plan to dismiss the batsman or a captain setting up the fielding positions, you are always making strategic decisions. You learn how to trust your decisions, take more and more risks and continuously learn and improve at the game.
Fun and Recreation:
Beyond its health and psychological advantages, cricket is simply super enjoyable. The excitement of hitting a six out of the ground or bowling a proper ripper of a delivery, or an taking an incredible catch is super exciting and give the players something to look forward to. Taking up this sport provides an escape from the monotony of everyday life. The sport offers a cool distraction, whether it's a match played after work or on the weekends with pals. The endorphins released during physical activity contribute to improved mood. Playing cricket combines fun with fitness to produce a good emotional and physical experience.
An important benefit of cricket is its inclusivity. The sport can practically be played by anyone and anywhere. The game is such that you can modify the rules and play according to your own rules. Also, you can continue to enjoy the game even with all the proper equipment. You can use a bamboo stick as the bat in the smallest of places and have a blast playing with it.
Shattering stereotypes in Sports - Women’s Cricket:
Cricket has massively contributed to the dismantling of social and cultural boundaries. It is not just the men’s game anymore the game that it was in the past. The popularity of the sport around the world has made women’s cricket equally as enjoyable to watch as the men’s game. You can see it through the number of spectators that turn out for every Women’s BBL match and the Women’s Premier League Games. Stadiums were jam-packed for every game of the WPL and players for the second season have sold for record prices in the WPL Auction.
Cricket for the Blind and Specially Abled People:
Know what’s more exciting than cricket being able to break stereotypes? It’s ability to have absolutely anyone play the game. Even visually impaired people can play the game and also compete in the World Cup. And there’s an actual Indian team of visually impaired players competing in the Blind Cricket World Cup. There are also multiple professional tournaments for wheelchair players, players with crutches, or any other specially-abled person. There’s absolutely anyone who can play the sport and that’s one of the beauties of the benefits of this beautiful game.
Like all sports, cricket encourages a healthy spirit of rivalry. The competitive mentality brings enthusiasm and drive to win games, whether playing in the starting 11 or helping the team out from the sidelines. Wins and losses are a part of the game and every player needs to accept it. The advantage of cricket is that it champions healthy sportsmanship. Beyond the boundaries of the ground, players can learn a vital life lesson by learning to accept both results with grace.
For the exceptionally skilled, cricket can evolve from a hobby to a career. There are innumerable state leagues and other T20 leagues that talented players can play in and earn a living for themselves. The higher your playing level, the higher you can make by playing in these leagues. There have been so many stories of players struggling financially to then being sold to an IPL team at the auction for crores of rupees. Also, there are so many scholarships and sponsorships for players to help them focus on their studies while developing their abilities.
In the end, there’s so much to learn from the game of cricket. It’s like living your life on the pitch. The importance of patience, opportunities, ups and down, highs and lows of life, perseverance all can be learned through this beautiful game. Remember that beautiful dialogue from the movie. MS Dhoni: The Untold Story, between AK Ganguly and Mahi,
AK: FullToss ball aata haito kya karta hai
Mahi: Hit karta hai
AK: Juicy half volley aata hai to
Mahi: Drive karta hai
AK: Outswing aata haito
Mahi: Leave karta hai
AK: Inswing aata haito
Mahi: Defend karta hai
AK: Aur unplayebale bouncer ball aata haito
Mahi: Duck karta hai
AK: Bus yahito life hai, aisa samjho yeh sab bouncers hai aur abhi tumko duck karna hai. Isme jyada sochne ka kya hai; life mein sab ball ek saman thodi na milega, merit pe khelna hai aur tike rehna hai. The Score Board will keep moving…….
That exactly what cricket is all about…………….
Now that you have learnt about the advantages and benefits of cricket, here are some more article we recommend you read to know more about the game: