It was last year that the BCCI had made it compulsory for its players to clear the Yo-Yo fitness test. This is a general parameter to rate the fitness of cricketers worldwide. Now with the IPL starting in a few days, some of the franchises are also making its players take the test.
The Yo-Yo test in cricket has been the recent talk in Indian cricket. Not only the players who play for the national team but also the young developing players are keen on clearing the test as it is the first level decision-point in the national team selection now. Anyhow Rahul Dravid, the Indian junior team coach has revealed that the Yo-Yo test will not be a factor in the junior team selection as of now. So what is Yo-Yo test in cricket?
The test, which is a variation of the beep test introduced by the BCCI in 2009, can efficiently judge an individual's aerobic endurance. Out of the two levels of this test, the BCCI uses the advanced degree as a metric for individual fitness. The test asks for players to systematically pace themselves which starts with a modest jog and culminates into lung-busting runs. Players have to run to, and fro of the two cones placed 20m from each other. The test is timed with 3 beeps which instruct and signals the start, turn and finish. The intervals in which the beep rings decreases as the laps go on which requires the players to accelerate their speed. Getting beaten twice by the beep ends the race and scores are calculated based on the rate and number of laps covered in the period.
You can perhaps attribute the increased fitness levels seen in the Indian team to this test. The trail blazed by skipper Virat Kohli, others too have followed suit in the Indian team with KL Rahul and Manish Pandey having performed considerably well in the test.
In the upcoming edition of the IPL, teams such as Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals have decided to introduce the Yo-Yo fitness test as a part of their routine training sessions, which will be helping all the players in working on their fitness skills.
To say just fitness plays an essential part in a player clearing Yo-Yo test wouldn't be accurate. Mental toughness and more importantly proper technique, in addition to stamina, is crucial to clear this test. It's essential that the player can hit the line and not cross it during his run.
The second crucial aspect of this test is the turning technique. If a player takes a wide U-turn while turning instead of coming right back, it'll add additional distance that the player will be forced to cover within the given time. The third aspect is the workload distribution. While every player will have a dominating side, it's crucial that they use both sides to turn instead of turning just on their left side or the right side.