Eric Simmons | Yo-Yo test
Indian National Cricket Team. Credit: AP

Last Update on: June 17th, 2018 at 03:16 pm

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Yo-Yo Test, in recent times, has become the mandatory fitness test to get selected in the Indian Cricket Team.

Recently Mohammed Shami flunked the test and missed the historic game against Afghanistan. On the other, Ambati Rayudu also failed only to be out of the ODI series against England.

Meanwhile, the yo-yo test involves a player shuttling between two cones, 20 metres apart on the flat ground. The player starts on beep and needs to get to the cone at the other end before the second beep goes. He then turns back and returns to the starting cone before the third beep. That is one “shuttle”.

A player starts at speed level 5, which consists of one shuttle. The next speed level, which is 9, also consists of one shuttle. Speed level 11, the next step up, has two shuttles, while level 12 has three and level 13 four.

There are eight shuttles per level from 14 upwards. Level 23 is the highest speed level in a yo-yo test, but no one has come close to getting there yet. Each shuttle covers a distance of 40 metres, and the accumulated distance is an aggregate of distance covered at every speed level.

Ever thought What Yo-Yo Test is all About? Know Here!!

However, a player gets ten seconds to recover between shuttles. At any point, if he fails to reach the cone before the beep goes, he gets the first warning.

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Usually, a player gets a few “reminders” to keep to the pace, but three official warnings generally mark the end of the test.

Moreover, as a player moves up the levels, the time available to complete each shuttle diminishes. As a result, he needs to sprint to reach the next cone before the beep. The player runs until he gets his three warnings, and the level achieved at that point is the test result.

Meanwhile, different teams have speed levels as qualifying marks. India had set 16:1 as the qualifying speed level, however, they recently increased the level to 16.3. New Zealand probably have the highest level, 20:1.

Why do cricketers need it?

Andrew Leipus, former India physio, says the yo-yo test is not merely a fitness test; in that, it also helps players improve their fitness while testing it.

The intention behind the yo-yo tests was and is to establish a baseline fitness, showing the players were fitter than the common man.

It is going to mean less injuries because the guys are fitter. It is going to mean high level of performance because guys are going to recover better out on the field. The turnaround time between matches is shorter now, so they are going to recover quick between games,” Leipus said earlier.

A yo-yo test also helps measure the aerobic capacity of a cricketer.

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Image result for yo yo test

When did India start using?

Fitness was high on Anil Kumble’s list of priorities when he took over as India coach in June 2016. Further, he got backing from Virat Kohli the captain, and senior players like MS Dhoni, who supported the idea of making passing the yo-yo test a requirement for selection.

Since then, it has been made mandatory, and two players got dropped from the squad for flunking the test. Mohammed Shami missed on the Afghanistan Test series while Ambati Rayudu will have to wait for more for his comeback.

Leipus also believes fitness quotient and cricketing ability are and should remain distinct. He cites the example of Yuvraj Singh to explain the scenario.

For example, Yuvraj has had cancer, so he has reduced lung capacity, based on the treatment he received. So that is obviously going to affect his running performance in a yo-yo test, but that is not going to directly affect his cricket ability,” Leipus says. “You are going to have to make those exceptions,” he concludes.

Also read: Five Indian players who will make their World Cup debuts in 2019

Ankush Das

I am an accountant by qualification, my parents thought their obedient son would study further to become a CA, but I had other things in mind. An ardent Cricket fan is following his passion and making...