Friday, February 19, 2010

Foot and Paddock


After yesterdays sunny day the weather has returned to it's usual pattern of recent months e.g. pouring with rain intersperesed with sleet and freezing cold. Having rolled the wicket yesterday in the paddock and compressed the earth the rain is not draining away particularly well and I may have to consider instigating some kind of rudimentary drainage. Perhaps make several small bore holes remove the earth and fill the bore holes with sand? I'll leave it and see what happens. Today 19th it hasn't rained yet and it's a bit breezy, so I'll go and have a look and see if there is still standing water?

Yesterday I drove up to Liz Ward to have my foot looked at and discovered that what I have is not classic plantar faciitis and in in fact a problem relating to the muscle in my calf - the peroneus longus, it seems this muscle is a tad damaged with loads of micro tears and repairs and therefore has the appearance of a thick lumps of woven rope instead of the smooth regular straight strands that make up your muscles. In addition it's incredibly tight and it's these things that are leading to the pain I'm having in my foot. So yesterday Liz massaged or rather neaded this muscle for quite some time which seems to possibly straighten out the rope texture of the muscle and possibly re-allign the muscle fibres/strands?

The good news is this morning when I got up I'd usually expect to have to hobble around like an old bloke for the first 5 minutes or so until my foot loosens up. Before I even got out of bed I could sense that my foot felt different and when I did get up there was a massive improvement - I was suffering about 10% of the normal pain I'd expect so that one session with Liz has made an extraordinary difference. I've now got to massage the muscle myself and stretch it and ensure it doesn't return to the condition it was in before Liz worked on it.

The other issue which was discussed was what is at the root of the calf muscle problem. One thing that Liz noted was that I stand with my feet pointing outwards whereas a perfect stance would be with both feet parallel to each other straigh forwards, so I've got to try and stand like that and walk with my feet in a parallel manner. If I do this I can feel the weight being distributed in a different way across the bottom of my feet. The other thing that Liz asked about was my bowling action (See slow motion video below). It's been noted in the past that my rotation around my left foot (Pivot foot) is far more than 180 degrees. If you think in terms of a clock with the batsman being beyond the 12 end of the clock, with my pivot foot in the middle of the clock, my rotating leg starts at 7 o'clock and rotates counter clockwise and end up between 10 and 11 o'clock representing a massive over - rotation. The foot that rotates round the pivot foot should go from 6 o'clock to 12 o'clock with my head and chest being far more forwards facing than it is at the minute. At the moment because my body comes round so far I have to crook my neck in order that I'm watching where the ball goes.

What I might also do this Monday at nets is film Alex 'The Wizard' McLellan while he's bowling to have a look at his action and try and get some clues as to what it is that he does that gives him such a massive amount of turn off the wicket. I'm assuming that he bowls with a 180 degree rotation, but I'm now interested in whether he keeps his chest and face going forward in the delivery as Shane Warne does?

Bowling session

In the meantime I was interested to see how easy or difficult it would be to change my action to the 180 degree rotation and how it might impact on my bowling. 26 overs later and I had some idea..... I bowled along a line so that I could see how well I was doing and straight from the outset it was easy and not only was it easy but it also seems to have improved my accuracy or at the very least not effected it at all, in fact as I was using Kwik cricket stumps I got fed up of having to walk back up the wicket and re-set the stumps after they'd been knocked down, that I used one stump and still kept hitting it and in the end had to stop hitting it and aimed to hit a fence post instead that was on the off-side a foot wide of the stumps just behind it.

There also seemed to be some improvement with my wrong un and the two flippers I bowled were dramatically improved for accuracy. I tried the big leg break using the big flick with some success but that's still a long way off of being usable but shows promise. I don't think it helps that I was still concentrating on the 180 rotation.

Weirdly though having bowled with this 180 rotation I've come home with the muscle soreness in the right leg in what feels like the peroneus longus!!! What's that all about?