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Newcastle Knights reducing stress

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by mozgrame, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. mozgrame

    mozgrame Well-Known Member

    +5,118 /51
    THE last two NRL seasons have been a rough ride for Newcastle.

    The Knights were forced to deal with ownership drama, missing salaries, three different coaches and the tragic and sudden injury to beloved teammate Alex McKinnon.

    All the stress and instability lead to tired bodies, injuries and poor performances, resulting in the dreaded wooden spoon in 2015.

    Something had to change, and now that Nathan Brown has the clipboard, it has.

    The fourth coach since the end of 2014, Brown has encouraged his team to look outside the box to help monitor fatigue, recovery and stress levels and has turned to the University of Newcastle for the latest technology.

    Knights’ head of sports science Jace Delaney is working with the university to administer sleep and saliva testing throughout the pre-season and 2016 using a relatively new technology that doesn’t take weeks to process.

    If ruthless and unnecessary pre-season floggings weren’t completely abolished with the invent of GPS technology, they are now.

    The Knights are swabbed for saliva and assessed instantly, so the coaching staff can adjust training or recovery based on same-day results which will indicate fatigue, muscle damage and hydration status.

    It is a relatively new form of research and when used in conjunction with sleep testing, the hope is to reduce stress levels and fatigue to train as efficiently as possible.

    “We want to stay on the cutting edge of sports science, but we understand that this is only one component of an overall elite medical and performance team,” Delaney told Foxsports.com.au.

    “Saliva testing in elite sport is quite popular and is increasing now.

    “At our club these methods are put in place to complement our more traditional methods rather than replace them.”

    Delaney said the new technology can identify internal stress, which has been previously unavailable to the sports science team.

    It also means the players have nowhere to hide when it comes to diet. The food they eat while they’re alone is now on show for the team to see, as even small changes in diet can have an impact on their hormone levels. Saliva testing is then used to give relevant nutritional advice so the players are as consistent as possible.

    The sleep testing technology is also on the cutting edge and requires the players to wear a basic device which tracks their movements while they’re asleep.

    “Our sports scientists are then able to extract this information and provide feedback to players on how well they did or didn’t sleep,” Delaney explains.

    “Everyone understands that sleep is vitally important to recovery, and we are just trying to be systematic about improving it.

    “Athletes sleeping patterns are typically worse than the normal population, due to the stresses of training and competition.

    “Players’ sleep quality is often inhibited as a result of heavy training loads, muscle soreness, or even early morning sessions. As sleep is often considered the one of best recovery methods available, improvements in sleep quality may assist in preparing athletes to perform.”

    The Knights are in the early stages of testing and data collection, so they are still gathering information on how to improve the sleep quality of the players.

    However, Delaney said the players have already become more aware of their own habits and how they are affected at training after a good or bad sleep.

    “There is still a lot to learn,” he said, adding that testing will last throughout the entire season with the hopes of making travel and recovery protocols as specific and beneficial as possible.


  2. Chip and Chase

    Chip and Chase True Supporter Staff Member Administrator Premium Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

    +8,579 /80
    Imagine what they would have found if they were saliva testing back in '97
    • Like Like x 5
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    • mozgrame

      mozgrame Well-Known Member

      +5,118 /51

      Psssst...wanna buy some stilnox? :snooze:

      • Funny Funny x 2
      • mozgrame

        mozgrame Well-Known Member

        +5,118 /51
        It would have been easy back then too. With all the dribblers they had back then, it would have been hard not to not get saliva on you if you ventured into their dressing room. Come to think of it...the more things change, the more they stay the same. lol
      • wombatgc

        wombatgc Well-Known Member Premium Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

        +4,511 /73
        Nothing to do with Diet, plenty to do with testing for Bolivian Marching Powder.
      • KOMORI

        KOMORI Born and bred an Eagle

        +3,716 /62
        Howmuchizzit??? ;)

      • HoldenV8

        HoldenV8 Well-Known Member

        +10,507 /173
        When I read the first few lines and Brown's name came up, I thought he was gonna take them surfing :surfer:
      • HappilyManly

        HappilyManly MWTS Premium Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

        +19,025 /367
        The big X factor is the Players‘ attitude, which no one can objectively test.
        Sooky Pants Foran being a case in point :mad:
      • JenEagle

        JenEagle Well-Known Member

        +1,891 /57
        They will get the spoon again this year. Titans, Tiges and Eels will round out the bottom 4.
        • Agree Agree x 1
        • manlyfan76

          manlyfan76 Parra Trolls are the best. Premium Member 2017 Tipping Competitor

          +8,033 /174
          Shane Dunley was ahead of his time.
          • Funny Funny x 1

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