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  • Writer's pictureJay Kasthuriarachchi

Understanding Throwing Injuries in Cricket: Causes and Prevention

Throwing injuries are common among cricketers, particularly among bowlers and fielders. The repetitive and high-intensity nature of throwing in cricket places significant stress on the shoulder and elbow, often leading to various injuries. Understanding the causes of these injuries is crucial for prevention and effective treatment.

Causes of Throwing Injuries

  1. Muscular Imbalances

  • Poor External Rotation Strength: One of the most significant factors contributing to throwing injuries is the imbalance between the internal and external rotator muscles of the shoulder. Cricketers often have stronger internal rotators (the muscles that bring the arm forward) compared to their external rotators (the muscles that pull the arm back). This imbalance can lead to overuse injuries and reduce the shoulder's ability to stabilize during the throwing motion, particularly during the follow through stage of the throw

  • Overemphasis on Internal Rotation: The repetitive action of throwing predominantly engages the internal rotators, causing them to become disproportionately stronger and tighter. This can restrict the range of motion and place undue stress on the shoulder joint, increasing the risk of injury.

  1. Humeral Retroversion

  • Natural Adaptation During Puberty: Humeral retroversion refers to the natural twist in the humerus (upper arm bone) that occurs during puberty. This adaptation allows for greater external rotation of the shoulder, which is beneficial for athletes who engage in throwing sports. However, if the humeral retroversion is excessive or develops asymmetrically, it can lead to mechanical issues and increase the risk of shoulder injuries.

  • Impact on Shoulder Mechanics: Cricketers with significant humeral retroversion may experience altered shoulder mechanics, making it challenging to achieve the optimal throwing position. This can lead to compensatory movements and increased stress on the shoulder joint and surrounding muscles.

  1. Repetitive Stress and Overuse

  • High Volume of Throws: Cricketers often perform a high volume of throws during training and matches. The repetitive nature of this activity can lead to overuse injuries, particularly in the shoulder and elbow. Overuse injuries occur when the cumulative stress on the tissues exceeds their ability to recover, resulting in inflammation, pain, and potential tissue damage.

  • Insufficient Recovery: Inadequate rest and recovery between throwing sessions can exacerbate overuse injuries. Without proper recovery, the tissues do not have sufficient time to repair and strengthen, increasing the risk of chronic injuries.

  1. Improper Technique

  • Faulty Throwing Mechanics: Poor throwing technique can place additional stress on the shoulder and elbow, increasing the risk of injury. Common technical errors include improper arm positioning, excessive shoulder rotation, inadequate follow-through, and not keeping stable through the rear foot on the throw. These errors can lead to increased strain on the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, resulting in injury over time.

  • Lack of Coaching and Guidance: Many cricketers, especially at the amateur level, may not receive proper coaching on throwing technique. This can result in the development of bad habits and increase the likelihood of injury.


Throwing injuries are a common concern for cricketers, but with proper understanding of the cause, we can significantly reduce the risk of injury. At SportsFit Health and Rehab, we offer specialized screening and tailored programs to help cricketers stay injury-free and perform at their best. If you're experiencing throwing-related pain or want to enhance your performance, contact us today to schedule an assessment.

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