Watford have announced a partnership with the GSK Human Performance Lab which aims to develop players’ training and recovery programmes

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The Hornets have announced a partnership with the GSK Human Performance Lab which will work closely with the Watford medical team to develop players’ individual training and recovery programmes.

The on-going partnership with the Lab, which is based in Brentford, has seen players undergo saliva and blood tests before and after training while further tests have taken place prior to matches.

The Lab’s scientists will measure the players’ stress responses to match-day tests through hormone analysis.

By further assessing hormone ratios during different training sessions, individual training and recovery strategies for first-team squad players will be implemented.

Watford’s medical staff and sport scientists will closely monitor the results and will travel to the Lab for monthly feedback sessions with the GSK scientists.

Watford’s head of medical, Marco Cesarini, told the club website: "Working with the Lab allows us to really understand the key drivers behind athletic performance on the pitch.

"Better understanding of the science behind performance will add to the processes we already have in place and will help our players to maximise their capabilities."

The Hornets have not revealed the finances of the partnership with the Lab, which was opened last October.

The Lab’s other partnerships include Brentford FC, Harlequins and London 2012 triathlon gold and bronze medals winners Jonny and Alistair Brownlee.

Watford’s Commercial Director, Alan McTavish, told the club website: "We are delighted to welcome the GSK Human Performance Lab into our club partner portfolio, it is fantastic to have such a world class facility, with its team of experts ready to assist and complement our own backroom team."

Mark Langley, general manager of the Lab, added: "It’s great to be working with Watford. Our aim is to give them a greater understanding of what can drive and improve their performance."

Comments (9)

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11:11am Thu 3 Apr 14

HornetJJ says...

Hopefully, this should help prevent the number of muscle injuries our players pick up as it does seem to be on the high side!
Hopefully, this should help prevent the number of muscle injuries our players pick up as it does seem to be on the high side! HornetJJ
  • Score: 6

11:38am Thu 3 Apr 14

Sahorn says...

Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-)

No more of these excuses then...
Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-) No more of these excuses then... Sahorn
  • Score: -8

12:07pm Thu 3 Apr 14

thehornet35 says...

Sahorn wrote:
Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-)

No more of these excuses then...
Good use of the quotation marks around muscle imbalance. Just to clarify AGAIN, muscle imbalance is a recognised and important problem. If a set of muscles on one side of a joint is weaker than the others, you are much more likely to injure the joint and or the soft tissues. Making sure that muscles are equally developed is crucial, just look up body builders on youtube who can bench press ridiculous weights with their upper body, but when the stand up their legs give way or snap! I would 100% of the time rather see a muscle imbalance picked up and worked on that see the player get injured, or worse still damage the joint permanently.

Also....the article talks about measuring players stress responses using hormones, that has nothing to do with the players fitness, but it is about how they perform in stressful environments (i.e. a game!) so don't expect to see any sort of tangible difference in their fitness any time soon. A good pre-season will be much more useful for the ability to last 90+ minutes.
[quote][p][bold]Sahorn[/bold] wrote: Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-) No more of these excuses then...[/p][/quote]Good use of the quotation marks around muscle imbalance. Just to clarify AGAIN, muscle imbalance is a recognised and important problem. If a set of muscles on one side of a joint is weaker than the others, you are much more likely to injure the joint and or the soft tissues. Making sure that muscles are equally developed is crucial, just look up body builders on youtube who can bench press ridiculous weights with their upper body, but when the stand up their legs give way or snap! I would 100% of the time rather see a muscle imbalance picked up and worked on that see the player get injured, or worse still damage the joint permanently. Also....the article talks about measuring players stress responses using hormones, that has nothing to do with the players fitness, but it is about how they perform in stressful environments (i.e. a game!) so don't expect to see any sort of tangible difference in their fitness any time soon. A good pre-season will be much more useful for the ability to last 90+ minutes. thehornet35
  • Score: 10

12:39pm Thu 3 Apr 14

Sahorn says...

thehornet35 wrote:
Sahorn wrote:
Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-)

No more of these excuses then...
Good use of the quotation marks around muscle imbalance. Just to clarify AGAIN, muscle imbalance is a recognised and important problem. If a set of muscles on one side of a joint is weaker than the others, you are much more likely to injure the joint and or the soft tissues. Making sure that muscles are equally developed is crucial, just look up body builders on youtube who can bench press ridiculous weights with their upper body, but when the stand up their legs give way or snap! I would 100% of the time rather see a muscle imbalance picked up and worked on that see the player get injured, or worse still damage the joint permanently.

Also....the article talks about measuring players stress responses using hormones, that has nothing to do with the players fitness, but it is about how they perform in stressful environments (i.e. a game!) so don't expect to see any sort of tangible difference in their fitness any time soon. A good pre-season will be much more useful for the ability to last 90+ minutes.
Yea -thanks for the explanation again.

my comment was flippant and also has a smiley :-) so isn't meant to be taken seriously

My serious comment -> Great to see my club becoming ever more professional and I hope this partnership can help us on our journey to attract and keep players and analyse/improve the performance of our squad in a scientific manner - another piece of the jigsaw for setting us up as a Premiership Football Club.
[quote][p][bold]thehornet35[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sahorn[/bold] wrote: Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-) No more of these excuses then...[/p][/quote]Good use of the quotation marks around muscle imbalance. Just to clarify AGAIN, muscle imbalance is a recognised and important problem. If a set of muscles on one side of a joint is weaker than the others, you are much more likely to injure the joint and or the soft tissues. Making sure that muscles are equally developed is crucial, just look up body builders on youtube who can bench press ridiculous weights with their upper body, but when the stand up their legs give way or snap! I would 100% of the time rather see a muscle imbalance picked up and worked on that see the player get injured, or worse still damage the joint permanently. Also....the article talks about measuring players stress responses using hormones, that has nothing to do with the players fitness, but it is about how they perform in stressful environments (i.e. a game!) so don't expect to see any sort of tangible difference in their fitness any time soon. A good pre-season will be much more useful for the ability to last 90+ minutes.[/p][/quote]Yea -thanks for the explanation again. my comment was flippant and also has a smiley :-) so isn't meant to be taken seriously My serious comment -> Great to see my club becoming ever more professional and I hope this partnership can help us on our journey to attract and keep players and analyse/improve the performance of our squad in a scientific manner - another piece of the jigsaw for setting us up as a Premiership Football Club. Sahorn
  • Score: 4

1:11pm Thu 3 Apr 14

exeterhornet says...

I know the game has moved on with science etc but I just want a bloody fit squad raring to go after pre season a la Taylor era. Our squads under him would run anyone in to the ground. Sure, it does not guarantee being injury free but it must help?
I know the game has moved on with science etc but I just want a bloody fit squad raring to go after pre season a la Taylor era. Our squads under him would run anyone in to the ground. Sure, it does not guarantee being injury free but it must help? exeterhornet
  • Score: 5

1:15pm Thu 3 Apr 14

JohnnyBarnes says...

exeterhornet wrote:
I know the game has moved on with science etc but I just want a bloody fit squad raring to go after pre season a la Taylor era. Our squads under him would run anyone in to the ground. Sure, it does not guarantee being injury free but it must help?
"We don't get cramp at this club!!"
[quote][p][bold]exeterhornet[/bold] wrote: I know the game has moved on with science etc but I just want a bloody fit squad raring to go after pre season a la Taylor era. Our squads under him would run anyone in to the ground. Sure, it does not guarantee being injury free but it must help?[/p][/quote]"We don't get cramp at this club!!" JohnnyBarnes
  • Score: 9

1:43pm Thu 3 Apr 14

Sealegs says...

Sahorn wrote:
Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-)

No more of these excuses then...
....and that jet lag that still affects players after a 2 hour flight 3 days ago.
[quote][p][bold]Sahorn[/bold] wrote: Can they fix 'muscle imbalance' and being 'tired' in the last 20 minutes of the game :-) No more of these excuses then...[/p][/quote]....and that jet lag that still affects players after a 2 hour flight 3 days ago. Sealegs
  • Score: 4

2:35pm Thu 3 Apr 14

croxley46 says...

Give 'em a Mars bar each 10 mins before full time should help their energy levels and, who knows, may prevent them conceding late goals ?!
Give 'em a Mars bar each 10 mins before full time should help their energy levels and, who knows, may prevent them conceding late goals ?! croxley46
  • Score: 3

9:17pm Thu 3 Apr 14

Mark-H says...

Yet another indicator of the improving standards of professionalism at every level of Watford FC under Pozzo stewardship. This can only be good news. I've come to believe that the higher number of injuries we've had since the takeover is due to the higher standards of sports science employed in top-level football (Udinese, Granada), rather than our pre-takeover medical staff not being up to the job.

Reading between the lines, I think a pre-season with this lot on board should allow the club to reduce the squad size (and thus the wage bill) while improving the fitness of those who remain. Could be particularly useful for the likes of Cassetti or Abdi.
Yet another indicator of the improving standards of professionalism at every level of Watford FC under Pozzo stewardship. This can only be good news. I've come to believe that the higher number of injuries we've had since the takeover is due to the higher standards of sports science employed in top-level football (Udinese, Granada), rather than our pre-takeover medical staff not being up to the job. Reading between the lines, I think a pre-season with this lot on board should allow the club to reduce the squad size (and thus the wage bill) while improving the fitness of those who remain. Could be particularly useful for the likes of Cassetti or Abdi. Mark-H
  • Score: 0

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