Tuesday, August 7th, 2012
Mo Farrah, and the Olympic 10km silver medalist America’s Galen Rupp, have been undertaking a focussed training regime by their coach and mentor Alberto Salazar. Alberto best known for his performances in the New York City Marathons in the early 1980s and his American track records of 13:11.93 for 5,000 m (July 6, 1982 – Stockholm) and 27:25.61 for 10,000 m – (June 26, 1982 – Oslo), has become a legend in the middle- and long-distance disciplines. Training elite athletes at the Nike Oregon Project, Alberto is known for complete focus, detail and novel-training techniques. One of those was to improve the breathing efficiency, through the intercostal muscles, of his athletes using RespiBelt.
RespiBelt is a specially constructed compression belt which allows you to train your breathing and chest muscles during exercise by providing an adjustable load. We are all very familar with training our biceps, legs, abs, by doing exercises such as bicep curls, squats and crunches, but what we don’t have, until now, is a way of training the inspiratory breathing muscles during exercise. Training our inspiratory muscles can improve our breathing efficiency, running economy, help with asthma, and make us use less energy. But please don’t look at the product and think you can use any old elastic belt. The team at Progressive Sports Technologies have spent years developing the right tension in the elastic. If the tension is too high it can overload the muscles, too low and you don’t get any benefit. If you get it just right, like in the RespiBelt, then you can achieve much better performance like the British Triathletes (wording from RespiBelt website):
“The first trial of early prototypes was performed with the support of British Triathlon and four of their TASS athletes over an 11 week period. The results of the training intervention proved very interesting. The participants significantly enhanced running economy measures, along with reduced sub-maximal oxygen utilisation and minute ventilation which was considered by British Triathlon scientists as being atypical of results expected due to habitual training adaptations. This prompted further investigation into the RespiBelt using a larger sample size with the addition of a control group. The second trial was performed with 12 competitive athletes over only a 4 week period. Additional measures were taken in addition to the measures previously investigated. All the measures showed positive changes compared to the control group who undertook the same training regime. Breathing endurance improved as did, sub-maximal oxygen consumption, % VO2max, sub-maximal minute ventilation and heart rate. Further improvements in running economy, respiratory frequency and minute ventilation were also present.“
RespiBelt comes in 6 sizes that are derived by measuring your chest: X-Small – chest sizes 75 to 80cm; Small – chest sizes 81 to 88cm; Medium – chest sizes 89 to 96cm; L arge – chest sizes 97 to 106cm; and X-Large – chest sizes 107 to 118cm.
If you would like to purchase the best accessory for training breathing muscles then please click on this link to buy the RespiBelt.
Sunday, October 23rd, 2011
Press release from Loughborough University:
With a punishing training schedule and six matches under their belts, the rest and recovery strategies of the French and New Zealand teams will be as crucial as their match play tactics in the Rugby World Cup final this Sunday. Innovative sports science technology developed at Loughborough University has been helping many of the All Blacks squad to maintain peak performance.
The Canterbury Crusaders make up one third of the All Blacks Team. The devastating Christchurch earthquake in February 2011 placed a massive strain on the Crusaders, with their home ground closed for the entire season, they effectively played every match as an away game. However, using the Loughborough expertise, the Crusaders were able optimize their recovery in order to reach the finals of the national championship and have 10 of their players selected for the All Blacks Rugby World Cup challenge, with Richie McCaw as captain.
The innovative recovery expertise is the work of Dr Vern Neville, a professional America’s Cup sailor, scientist and coach who spent over a decade analyzing the behaviours and training patterns of elite athletes from the worlds of rugby, sailing, soccer, cycling and Formula 1.
Honing his research in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Science at Loughborough University (Team GB’s Olympic preparation base), Dr Neville sought programming expertise from Harvard and Stanford University alumni to create an intuitive web and smartphone based software for intelligent recovery. The software uses 13 daily evidence based inputs including resting heart rate, sleep, hydration, mood, appetite, muscle soreness and illness and converts these using smart analytics into a single recovery score. This enables athletes and teams to decide how hard to train and how much they should rest.
Commenting on the impact of the Loughborough expertise, Ashley Jones, the Canterbury Crusaders Physical Performance Co-Ordinator / Strength & Conditioning Coach from 2004 – 11, said: “With the use of Restwise (the software) we were able to ascertain which players needed extra sessions for recovery and also seeing which recovery modalities worked best with players, so in effect individualising the recovery as we do our physical training.”
“Recovery isn’t just important, it’s a biological necessity,” said Dr Neville. “Too little recovery and you slowly grind yourself down, risking both impaired performance and lowered immune function. Too much recovery and you don’t introduce enough stress to trigger physiological adaptation. You don’t get fitter, stronger and faster.” He continued: “Without a way to consistently and easily monitor recovery during high demand training or competition periods such as during the Rugby World Cup, even the best trained teams are at risk of over-fatigue or injury. This could well be the deciding factor in the outcome of the World Cup.”
Restwise has already been part of 38 world championship wins, gaining the respect of coaches and practitioners from the world of professional rugby, cycling and sailing as well as a host of Olympic sports.
Professor Myra Nimmo, Head of Loughborough University’s School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences where Vern undertook his PhD commented: “Restwise is an excellent example of how our world leading scientific research can be translated to deliver real impact in optimising sport performance.”
Monday, September 12th, 2011
The Rugby World Cup has produced many memorable moments for fans across the world! Perhaps some of the most prominent images come from the finals of the 1995 and 2003 competitions, both of which were decided on drop goals in the dying moments of extra time. Part of the key to these successes has always been the quality of the ball. For the 5th competition in succession Gilbert has won the right to produce the World Cup ball.
The 2011 Virtuo has a number of similarities and changes compared to its 2007 predecessor the Synergie. For example, the pimple pattern and compound of the outer part of the ball is exactly the same. The ball’s main change occurs internally, with a different type of bladder that maintains the air inside the ball at the same pressure for the duration of the match. The bladder which has a different shape and increased weight also helps to increase ball stability in the longitudinal axis. The shape and weight of the valve have also been changed helping the ball to spin on its longitudinal axis, these features are especially useful for torpedo kicks or spin passes. These characteristics also help to increase the consistency of the ball throughout the game and when different balls are used.
This is the first tournament ball that has design that symbolises the culture of the host nation. The Maori pattern incorporates a fern shoot and hammerhead shark that interlock together at each end of the panels.
384 individually hand stitched balls will be used during the World Cup, but they won’t be completely new to the competing teams. They have been used internationally since Autumn 2010, with large amounts of positive feedback. England World Cup winner and former fly half says that, ‘If you hit it sweet, the ball will hold its line and do exactly what its meant to do’. Statistics have also shown an improvement in goal kick success rates, since the balls introduction. Success at a World Cup is ultimately down to player ability, but this ball is bound to create many more wonderful World Cup memories!
Wednesday, August 31st, 2011
Friday, August 19th, 2011
In this article, SPORTSTECHREVIEW introduces Rob Shugg co-founder of Kinetic Performance Technology Pty Ltd. Together with his partner Evan Lawton, they have created among many products, GymAware (http://powertool.gymaware.com/ ). Rob explains the technology:
Please introduce yourself?
Kinetic Performance was founded in 2000 by myself and Evan Lawton after 10 years developing sports science technology at the AIS. Since then we have developed a range of systems for use in elite sport with the aim of bridging the gap between sports science and practical application in sport. We have a very strong focus on making technology that is easy to use, robust and that “works as advertised”
How did you get interested in the sports industry?
We both enjoyed our time at the AIS and got to know many athletes, coaches and sports scientists. We could see so many opportunities to streamline the way these people work together. Back then, sports technology was a very new and exciting field. We realised in 2000 that to have a chance to fully implement these ideas, we would need to leave the safety of the AIS and set up our own company
What was your background before developing Gymaware?
Our background is firmly in engineering and technology, that’s our passion – 10 years at the AIS infused a sports flavour to our engineering, that’s grown steadily over the last decade.
What is Gymaware?
GymAware is a power measuring device for use in the weights gym. Power is the key ingredient in athletic performance and the most competitive teams train specifically for power. They develop training programs specifically to develop power and speed in the athlete. GymAware is used to both monitor the effectiveness of these programs, and to motivate athletes by giving them feedback while they train. With GymAware athletes can focus on performing high quality lifts that develop the performance traits they need to win. The gym is no longer just a place to bulk up and build strength, its now a pit stop to develop power, and finely tune the athlete.
Why is it unique?
GymAware is unique because it is simple enough for anyone to use. The concept of measuring power in the weights room has been around for at lease a decade. But it has been restricted to bulky, expensive, complex systems that require a sports scientist to operate. GymAware is small, portable and runs on Apple iOS (iPhone/iPad/iTouch) platforms. The user is up and running in less than a minute. The fully automated analysis give the user rep by rep readings on power, velocity and 11 other performance parameters. The simplicity of GymAware makes this elite sport training technology available to performance focused personal trainers and to serious amateur athletes.
Are there any top athletes using it?
GymAware is used around the world by sports institutes and top level teams and including Rugby,AFL,NRL, Premier League and others.
What’s the science behind it?
The Power Tool 5 is a Linear Position Transducer (LPT) specifically designed to measure speed and power of athletic movement, specifically in the weights room. It combines highly accurate digital position and time measurement, triaxial accelerometery (for measuring angle of lift) and state of the art signal processing to automate analysis of the individual lifts. It basically measures the movement path of the weights bar, weights stack, or of the athlete while they lift, throw, or jump.
How can our readers purchase Gymaware?
Interested readers can contact us at email@example.com for details on how they can purchase GymAware
Article by Bryan Roberts