It is probably the most extended break we’ve all taken from Cricket. We can all feel it. It’s hard, and it’s painful to stay away from the thing we are passionate about and love the most. For a lot of other people, it’s not only passion, but it’s also a profession. It’s tough to be not able to put food on the table for themselves and their family. And for businesses like us at freebowler, a cricket innovation brand, who are in the mix of passion, profession, and in the process of keeping cricketers happy and entertained, it’s hurting to see unhappy faces. We can’t wait to get back on track to fulfill your cricketing needs and completing your training experience. We are going through unprecedented times in the history of humanity like none of us seen or been through one. We are grateful to be still alive, and we’ll be the most resilient generation of human beings when we make it through. I’m sure we’ll do excellent, and it’s a no brainer that Cricket can’t wait for too long as it feeds millions and millions of people across the globe, not just in Cricket but beyond it.
But when we do come out stronger, we’ve to be mindful and cautious of a few things before we step back onto the cricket fields after the lockdown, and we see things returning to normal. We need to understand how our bodies work, both physically and mentally, and prepare for it in the long run. Along with it, understand the importance of setting aside assistive training aids to complement the inefficiencies on the ground to get through the training sessions like before. It’s going to be challenging(not impossible) to get back onto the playing field with the same intensity, intent, and energy levels as before. It’s safe to assume that the resources are going to be scattered.
But one area in Cricket that we can still get away without compromising is batting. We might yet not have the most realistic match simulation bowling and fielding aids, but we have one for batting. The need for cricket bowling machines and ball throwers with portable playing surfaces will be higher than ever before. Bowling machines and ball throwers are already a thing in Cricket, but it’s going to become mainstream post COVID era. And with “freebowler superthrower” — Cricket’s 1st non-electric and portable ball thrower, the cricket batting practice just becomes so much more accessible, affordable, convenient, and efficient.
Post COVID Era For Cricketers: Real-life Scenarios
Just the thought of coming in contact with an infected individual, sharing the same dressing room space, and training gears could be overwhelming. It still plays on our minds every time we step out. The slightest of all things that could bother us and can adversely affect the stimulus and nerve reactions leading to incomplete actions. Thus dissatisfied game and practice performances. But we also have to learn to make peace with the fact that we could have temporarily lost our original form and touch with the game. But humans are gifted with the ability to “adapt,” and we just can’t stop growing and innovating. We are good at tricking our minds into believing in what we want to.
Naturally, people will be reluctant from now on to go out and play in team settings. It’ll be more personalized and limited to a close group of 4–5 people in private facilities and less public places. In shared practice facilities, with a variety of randomly available time slots with limited groups of people allowed, it’s going to even harder to get everybody in a team on-board for a particular time slot that suits all. It’s going to be challenging unless one had access to private practice facilities.
And with limited people out of which, how many of them are fast bowlers capable of bowling for long periods and consistently? It’s hard as it stands to find genuine fast bowlers capable of bowling with consistent speeds, desired lines, and lengths that challenges the batsman for more extended periods. Still, post corona era, it’s going to be even harder to find bowlers with the flexibility of time and effort.
But cricketers are also brilliant in converting spaces into makeshift cricket practice facilities both indoors and outdoors. So it’d be a great option to have assistive and accessory training aids as a part of their new norm of training setup, especially when practicing on terraces, front yards, parking spaces, backyards, corridors, hallways, abandoned sheds, apartment basements, and more. In times like these, a portable and non-electric ball throwing aid like freebowler superthrower comes in very handy. Bowlers coming back after a long break could be rusty, a bit reluctant to go full speed and manage the injury scare. They are better off taking it lightly. In such times, we’d require a reliable, fast bowler and always there irrespective of the practice team size. Cricketers would need an assistive training aid, especially a bowling machine. And with a portable practice pitch, now just two people are all set and good to go.
What lockdown means to businesses? Future Buying Patterns and Trends
For brands in the business of making training aids, we are now looking at a more significant opportunity. The target group is now individual cricketers and smaller groups versus teams, entities, and institutional buyers. So the audience becomes broader and specific. Also, because more people are spending time on the internet, social media attention and engagement is excellent. CPMs(Cost Per Mille/Impression) are even higher because companies bidding for the same spots are now lower. Most other companies in similar verticals have cut down on their marketing budgets. All this works out in favor of bowling machine and portable pitch manufacturing companies only if they figured out a way to manufacture and reproduce units at a faster pace but safely.
Although the pandemic has dented the economy, we’ll still see the cash circulation. Spending behaviors will change and will never be the same. From now on, people will begin making smart buying decisions with higher ROI(Return-On-Investment) and not amass unnecessary stuff. We’ll move more towards a sharing-economy culture. People’s spending on other cricket equipment like extra bats, ball, mat, and wear and tear training aids will be less. Cricketers would also spend less on cricket matches, paying for training sessions, traveling, food, and other logistics associated with cricket training. So they’d instead invest in buying personalized training aid that they could own for the next 2–3 years for the same amount they would have otherwise spent. It also means sharing the resources by splitting a cost with a known group of personal comfort. It’s a win-win situation for both businesses (cricket ball throwing aid manufacturers) and cricketers.
Use Case Scenarios & Testimonials
1. Ranjeet Singh — USA
“Finally decided to put the freebowler to work. I bought this mechanical ball pitching machine two years ago. Today was the first day we used it. I usually like to give throw down myself or Using sidearm thrower, but with almost 45 days since we have left home, my shoulder has given up with the number of throwdowns.
This thrower is way better than I thought. It is consistent on line and speed and offers a few variations too. It can easily throw to speed of 130–140 KPH, you can vary the length and swing, and I can’t wait to explore it more. I am just glad that I decided to give it a try. It helps me Challenge the kids a little more with drills.
It is tough to get going in the beginning, but after you have spent about 30–45 minutes on it, it’s not that bad. It is a little noisy, however. I will find out in a couple of days if any of my neighbors complain about it.
It is also developed/designed in India.”
2.Preetam Kothapally — Hyderabad
“Have been using it, and I like it — I love the pitch you are using it on though — comes nicely on to the bat at an even height — our pitch is fast, seaming, and unpredictable bounce.”
My son Arnav might have said it best — “there is no substitute to batting against real cricket balls — and the viability from the source is better than the other bowling machines.”
After a break of 2–3 months irrespective of how much we’ve trained indoors and tried to keep ourselves fit, the outdoor bodily responses are going to be different. The nature of the body is still invariably different when it tries to get accustomed to physical conditions like air resistance, weather, humidity, temperature, playing surface underneath, and factors that affect the gameplay. Our bodies are going to be rusty from all the rest and restricted body movements staying indoors. That’s just on the bodily movements for running and stretching. Still, having similar levels of reflexes and instincts when dealing with a hard leather ball at 140kmph while batting, bowling and fielding is a different ball game altogether. Even the most professional athletes are going to feel the slack. We need to embrace the change, respect our bodies to get through the initial phase, and slowly to allow it to settle to the new norm. The transition is crucial.
Cricket’s 1st Non-Electric & Portable Ball Thrower Now Available: https://freebowler.com/