“I think whatever gives you 1% better, and you can benefit from technology, is convenient. I am a doctor and I love science, how it is applied in sports, how it is applied to the different responses of the human body,” fighter and surgeon, Jane Valencia, told El Economista. : “I find it essential.”
More and more athletes every day realize the need to have a pool of multidisciplinary experts and surround themselves with technology to improve their performance. In this way, it is common for them to hire nutritionists and psychologists. Now, athletes like Diego del Real, the fourth-place hammer thrower at the 2016 Rio Olympics; Tonio Lopez, the Mexican record holder in the 800m or Daniela Velasco, bronze medalist at the Paralympic Games in London. All ranked in Tokyo 2020 in their competitions, they also included a Sports Curriculum Specialist, who is responsible for creating personalized training by integrating both multidisciplinary specialists.
Daniel Moncayo is the methodologist responsible for this mission, and he is also responsible for the high performance of the state of Puebla. For the specialist, the use of data, monitoring, and internal and external measurement of workloads is essential in the high performance and practices observed in first world countries such as England, Spain, Russia and Japan, all of which fall within the eleven medalists of the Summer Olympics.
There are different techniques for measuring and monitoring the external (training session) load (the distance or times of the athlete) and the internal (what happens inside the body). While most coaches usually stick to the first part of assessing athletes, a few are in the second part.
While most coaches usually stick to the first part of assessing athletes, a few are in the second part.
“There is a lot of technology, some very expensive, some very cheap, and the degree of effectiveness and fidelity varies, but there are also free apps that help you. The problem here is that you don’t want to do it out of ignorance, because you don’t feel like it or because most coaches don’t They still experiment and feel a little insecure with new technologies (…) also because of a lack of budget or because they don’t know how to interpret this information.”
On the other hand, the growing interest for coaches, specialists and athletes to be at the forefront of science and technology applied to sports has allowed the diversification of specialized schools.
“Before there was only ENED or SEP, today there is a lot of supply and demand in science applied to sport, and more and more people, at least, have a degree. The problem I think exists is self-centeredness, many of us have not learned to work As a team and ultimately the only way to achieve success in high performance is to form a multidisciplinary team that coexists and works towards the same goal, that is the result.”
The science of recovering from injury
“Sure the physical therapy part has evolved in an incredible way, before it was probably a little bit more difficult to get you out of the injury, now with technology, with the new changes, it’s already a lot easier, a lot faster, very revealing that injury is much easier,” Carolina Mendoza commented. .
Dr. Kethzel García Padron, MD, a specialist in medicine for physical activity and sports, shared with El Economista that, in his view, Mexico is well placed in studying the detection and treatment of athletes’ injuries, despite the fact that countries like the United States or Australia lead the way in that region. .
“We have an excellent momentum to update and advance so that we can serve all these athletes. As we travel with our athletes, we are exposed to all this kind of motivation and information, and it challenges us to keep improving year after year to be on the cutting edge, at the cutting edge, up to date to continue to provide better tools to facilitate performance .of our athletes.”
The specialist pointed out that among the essential factors in the occurrence of injuries, healthy movement patterns must be taken care of and the transfer of abnormal movement patterns to high-performance sports should be avoided. For this, it is important to carry out an “excellent” functional assessment in relation to some exercises with the tests applied from the experience of the doctor, as well as some technological tools.
“Clinically, there are some tests that need to be developed and implemented with some expertise, however, there is also technology that helps us with what is motion analysis, which are the sensors that are placed around our bodies and through the computer represents graphs that help us measure some of the imbalances, the rotations, and muscle compensation, through which we can develop a plan of action that helps us to modify this pattern of movement that can improve.”
Then the methodology is responsible for increasing the performance capabilities of the athlete.
What are the tools that help prolong the athlete’s career?
“Therapeutic exercises are an excellent tool that helps to prolong these types of aspects because they work on the restructuring of the nervous system and on the proper quality of movement (…) There is also a multidisciplinary group, and nutrition is very important (. .) Supplementation is one of the elements that helps to prolong Athlete’s age, excellent planning through coaching methodology and sports psychology. When we have all of these tools connected, we really work to evolve, in the overall life cycle that is totally favorable to that athlete.”
Public institutions, such as Conade itself, are beginning to incorporate new tools in order to provide the best possible preparation for athletes. In May 2021, the agency opened the National Center for Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation at CNAR. According to its titles, this space integrates the elements of a world-class medical sports headquarters and contains the functional areas, nutrition, chiropractic, counseling, recovery, instrumentation, functional rehabilitation with a playground complete with turf of different materials, a suitable gym treatment, Among other things.
How do Mexican athletes apply measurement, science, and technology?
I measure from the hours I sleep, what I eat, to the hours I spend with my family, with my friends. (…) Everything is measurable and I believe that to be a good athlete you have to integrate all aspects of your life: psychosocial, nutrition, recovery, everything is important to be 100%.”
Paula Moran, 400-meter athlete.
It’s a more specific setting for me. (…) Everything was modified for me. We work with electronic bibs, with those lights that make your brain react a little faster and influence tactics and strategies.”
Preciida Acosta, Taekwondon.
We have stress tests (in which) they put a heart rate monitor on us and we increase the resistance even more, it could be in devices like a bike and see how our performance evolves. We have functional neurological reaction tests, with different lights and devices.”
Jane Valencia, Olympic fighter.
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