THIS is the top-secret sports science technology that has given the South Sydney Rabbitohs the power and strength edge to demolish their premiership rivals this season. The blood-energising chips and ice fluid treatment had to be cleared by the NRL because its usage was banned by the NFL after the Baltimore Ravens won the 2013 Super Bowl.
Author: PHIL ROTHFIELD SPORTS EDITOR-AT-LARGE THE DAILY TELEGRAPH SEPTEMBER 29, 2014
Boxer Anthony Mundine introduced the controversial products to Souths coach Michael Maguire, whose players have been wearing the chips, hidden under wrist strapping, jerseys and socks since Round 8 — the same time they turned their season around.
According to sports medicine experts, the product can allow athletes to perform at a maximum level for longer. Hence, South Sydney’s strong finishes and high energy levels that have been so evident in the build-up to the grand final.
The Rabbitohs coach was reluctant to discuss the benefits from the technology that has been used in dressing-shed secrecy when contacted by The Daily Telegraph on Sunday night.
“I really don’t want to give away any of the info that has got us to this point,” Maguire said.
“We’re always looking at the cutting edge stuff that can help make better players.
“We want to hang onto our own stuff and I don’t want to give away too much.
“Choc’s high-performance team and our guys share information. They came to us.
“My guys (sports science) looked deeply into it before we started.
“This is just another of those one-percenters that every team looks for.
“Maybe I’ll talk about it more after the game.”
The wrist strapping can be clearly seen on all Souths players — except for Sam Burgess and Alex Johnston— who wear them in different areas including the chest and ankle.
The ice fluid is most often used, soaked onto a cloth, under the jersey. It helps keep the players’ body temperature stay lower over a longer period of time which prevents fatigue.
It is also sprayed on the players’ jerseys at half-time.
Maguire has distanced the Rabbitohs from any connection with controversial US sports supplements maker Mitch Ross, who was banned from the NFL.
Baltimore Ravens stars including Ray Lewis used the chips and ice treatment, that were developed in the US, before the team won the Super Bowl.
“This has nothing to do with him [Lewis],” Maguire said, “It’s all been ticked off by the NRL.
“The game is very thorough in checking these things.”
Souths began using the products after a sluggish start to the season that included loses to the Canberra Raiders, Wests Tigers, Manly and the Bulldogs in the first seven rounds. The turnaround was immediate and remarkable.
Even beaten Roosters coach Trent Robinson commented after Friday night’s loss: “They had too much energy for us.”
Sports science and supplements expert Shannon Brenton explained how the chips work. “The same as Chinese medicine has identified the meridians that form electrical pathways throughout the body, our technology allows for the continual and unhindered flow of energy throughout these meridians, without the need for needles, heat or pressure.
“It’s a bit like mobilised acupuncture
“The result is an athlete that can play as hard in the 80th minute as they can in the first, hence what we have seen in the second-half stats from the Rabbitohs this year”