Cricket, also known as the gentleman’s game is an engaging game full of tasking physical activity, high demand for concentration, speed, and patience. Different from other games, a cricket match can last for some days with breaks in between. The game requires a lot of mental and physical strength since a session can last for up to 9 hours. In addition to strength, players need concentration to remain focused. However, all these demands are not in vain since the game has numerous health benefits. In fact, you can begin saving the money spent on gym subscription when you start to play cricket. Below, we share with you 8 surprising health benefits of playing cricket that will propel you to the field for a healthier you:
- Burn Calories
Cricket is a perfect workout to burn calories. Since this is a fast game, you can burn more calories within a short time which is a plus to incorporating exercise to your busy schedule. It is estimated that you can burn over 350 calories within one hour of playing cricket. What’s more, cricket helps increase your protein intake for strength, thus, preventing yours from frequent hunger pangs. Proteins take long to digest which enables you to feel fuller for longer.
- Strengthen Muscles
Cricket involves a lot of muscle exercise due to hitting, pitching, throwing, and catching the ball as you move from one wicket to the other. Each activity has specific benefits to every group of muscles involved. For instance, muscles in your legs and upper boy are strengthened as you hit and swing the ball while your chest and arm muscles benefit from the throws.
- Improved Motor Skills
Playing cricket helps you develop stellar motor skills for bowling, catching and batting. Cricket exercises your body’s larger muscles including the back, glutes, chest, quadriceps, and hamstrings. Enhanced muscle development is vital in weight management since fats are converted into energy for fuelling the body. Reduced breakdown of fats enhances the rate of metabolism. Cricket also helps tone your body muscles making you keep in shape.
- Hand-Eye Coordination
Playing cricket helps improve hand-eye coordination and peripheral eye-vision. Every action in the game calls for hand and eye coordination, be it hooking a bouncer by a batsman from his nose’s tip to the stand’s top or taking a catch by a fielder. For you to excel in the game, your hands and eyes must be in harmony.
Cricket involves performing some actions within a limited period including diving, hooking, and bowling. Your body gains a lot of flexibility by accomplishing these activities. Improved flexibility increases muscle length which has a positive impact on performance. Flexibility is vital in preventing injury to muscles and ligaments due to overstretching
- Cardiovascular Health
Cricket involves short moments of sprinting which are useful for cardiovascular health. Intense physical activity increases the heartbeat rate. Increased heartbeat is a good exercise for the heart and helps prevent blood vessels from clogging. Also, when the heart pumps more blood, your lungs draw in more oxygen to be supplied to other parts of the body including the brain. Increased oxygen supply to the brain helps prevent stroke.
- Improves Concentration
Regular cricket helps you increase concentration as you sharpen your game skills. When playing cricket, you make quick decisions and think under pressure which enhances your ability to make a sound judgment. A batsman has to deduce ways to help him read the ball, the bowler’s and fielder’s mind. To accomplish all these, it does require not only concentration but also sharpens your mind. A bowler also needs to study the batsman’s moves for him to make a score. Your mental capability is also enhanced during field preparation where analytical skills are required to plan attack strategies. Playing cricket helps you achieve strong mental abilities and improves concentration.
- Balance and Agility
Playing cricket helps improve your balance and ability to move fast. You perform some activities simultaneously both when bowling and diving to catch the ball. You also learn more on how to run fast which helps improve your stability. Cricket also enhances your core stability by promoting abdominal function from where strokes are executed. The controlled movements enable your body to achieve balance and rhythm.