Northampton Saints use Peak to explore effects of cognitive training on physical performance
Brain training app Peak has announced that rugby union team the Northampton Saints will be incorporating it’s Pro version into the team’s training to allow the medical team, Peak’s neuroscientists and the University of Cambridge to investigate the links between cognition, brain training and elite sports performance.
Saints physio Lee Daggett, said: “Sports performance, especially at the elite level, depends both on outstanding physical and mental ability. This is certainly true in rugby union, when coaches need players to be able to maintain their focus and make correct decisions even after playing 80 minutes of intense action.”
Over the course of this summer’s pre-season training, a number of the Saints squad regularly undertook assessments in different key cognitive areas identified as important in elite sports performance. Half of the group underwent memory training for 30 days using the Peak Advanced Training Memory game, after which point the entire group was assessed again.
Daggett continues: “The partnership with the University of Cambridge and Peak will give us the wherewithal not just to measure our players’ cognitive abilities, but also to assess the impact of brain training in improving their performance levels and recovery from the head injuries which can sometimes occur in a contact sport. This is of particular interest to us as a medical team, as it will enable our assessment and management of such injuries to be much more thorough and directed, leading to improved player welfare.”
This brain training will continue during the 2015/16 season — using Peak’s Pro plan — with data being tracked and analysed at regular intervals, aiming to adapt brain training to each player’s individual needs.
We’ll look forward to hearing more about the results of the study and wait to see if it’s able to improve the Saints results this season!