The inspiration for the innovation leads back to a challenge that a young talented athlete was facing on his quest to become top athlete in his discipline. He was physically in an outstanding condition and was training meticulously following best practice methodologies. However, the blood, sweat and tears and top level physical attributes were not being effectively transferred to the sport and he was not seeing the desired levels of improvement in overall performance.
We started to challenge the status quo and the methods used in order to gain the momentum that would catapult the athlete to the next level.
As a result, we commenced a thorough analytical study across multiple sports (ice hockey, football, cross country skiing etc.) to find common denominators that may have a more profound effect on the performance of the athlete as far as physical abilities are concerned.
After a year of research, we were able to ascertain that the production and utilization of power in the core was a common challenge across different sports (ice hockey, football, cross country skiing etc.).
In addition, by analyzing the muscles that support the knees and the back we discovered that the middle glute is one of the most important muscles in delivering maximum power transfer to the floor. This muscle is crucial in supporting the movement in jumps or kicks. However, there were not many effective exercises that support the activation of the middle glute.
We started to challenge the nature of various commonly known drills and exercises and evaluating their effectiveness in addressing this challenge. The key questions were:
- How does this particular drill or exercise support and enhance the performance in a particular sport?
- And how do we change the methodologies to support the athlete a) to identify and b) to control the muscle groups required to enhance performance in a particular sport?
a) to identify: being able to identify which muscle groups are being used and having the capabilities to change the needed muscle groups by a subtle movement of the upper body.
b) to control: being able to control the movement even in extreme positions. E.g. Can an ice hockey player improve his or her skating performance by having better control of the leg muscles at full extension?
The powerboard concept was born!!!!!!!!!
After rigorous design and development work, we had a powerful product and an appealing design developed which enabled to get active in the market with top athletes and other key influencers.
Market testing has resulted in abundance of extremely positive feedback from trainers and athletes. It’s proving to help athletes in better power procurement and better control. Scientific measurements are also depicting a true success story: 1. EMG-measurements showed that exercises made with the power board activate thigs and glutes better than any other tested exercises. 2. The tests made by the power insoles showed that athletes can produce 20-25% more power using the powerboard than exercise made without the board on the floor.
In addition, observations were made on the athletes’ body control during the movement. E.g. the knees rotation was decreased significantly.
Downforcetraining™ and Downforcer™-powerboard is planned to help athletes and also sportsmen towards their own goals and dreams.
– Kari Laitinen, professional trainer