Here are the services we provide, with a full description:
This is a comprehensive functional and biomechanical evaluation, as well as a rehabilitation and consultation service, for anyone who is looking to improve his/her running performance or with lower body musculoskeletal injuries. The analysis is performed on a Zebris® Force and Pressure Distribution platform that is integrated on a high-end h/p/cosmos® treadmill to analyze foot pressure, impact forces, roll-off and other gait parameters during walking and running. High-speed video cameras (100 fps) are used in conjunction with the Simi Aktisys automated motion-capture system to provide precise, quantitative biomechanical assessments for real-time biofeedback and off-line evaluation. Each athlete receives a personalized performance plan, including specific stretching and strengthening exercises, shoe/orthotic recommendations and corrective exercise techniques. Our expert professionals work one-on-one with the athlete to develop an individualized program to help achieve his/her specific performance goals.
CYCLING SPIN-SCAN ANALYSIS
Cyclists and triathletes can optimize their pedal stroke via a comprehensive computerized analysis on their bikes using the RacerMate® CompuTrainer™. The spin-scan evaluation calculates bi-lateral cycling efficiency of the leg musculature, as well as left vs. right power split and average torque angle. The individualized analysis also includes instantaneous, average and peak power output, revolutions per minute and speed.
SPORT NUTRITION ASSESSMENT AND CONSULT
Sport-specific nutrition interventions can help an athlete maximize power and endurance, as well as overall health and performance. The intervention begins with a 3-day dietary analysis, including an assessment of daily eating patterns, training dietary habits and nutrition tactics used during training and competition, including preparation and recovery. Through a one-on-one consultation with our sports dietitian, individualized strategies to maximize training and performance are developed. The dietitian also helps the athlete accommodate any specific allergies or chronic health conditions he/she may have. The goal is to help each athlete effectively fuel his/her body for optimal performance and health.
RESTING ENERGY EXPENDITURE (REE) AND BODY COMPOSITION EVALUATIONS
Determining an athlete’s REE, or roughly the minimum number of calories the body needs each day to function properly at rest, is extremely important when trying to personalize one’s nutrition and fitness strategies. Body composition (relative percentage of body fat and lean body mass) and REE are closely linked to one another and provide a foundation for establishing an athlete’s nutrition and fitness goals. Body fat percentage is estimated from multiple skin fold measurements and REE is determined from measuring oxygen and carbon dioxide exchange while at rest.
SWEAT FLUID AND ELECTROLYTE LOSSES AND PHYSIOLOGICAL STRAIN IN THE HEAT
This is an individual evaluation of an athlete in a specific environment using a temperature, humidity, and exercise intensity that elicited performance or health problems (for example, premature fatigue, heat exhaustion or muscle cramps) or to simulate upcoming training or competition conditions. Sweat fluid and electrolyte (sodium, potassium and chloride) losses are determined and cardiovascular and thermal strain (heart rate, core body temperature and physiological strain index) are evaluated. Individual-specific hydration and dietary strategies are provided, so that each athlete can more optimally prepare for, manage and recover from sweat fluid and electrolyte losses incurred during training or competition.
HEAT TOLERANCE TESTING
This is an evaluation of an athlete’s current tolerance to exercising in the heat. Athletes should consider having this test performed if he/she has had a heat-related illness, especially exertional heat stroke, or a long period of no exposure to the heat. This test can also be used to evaluate an athlete’s thermal and cardiovascular responses while wearing a particular clothing or uniform configuration during physical activity.
ATHLETE FIELD EVALUATIONS
One or more athletes are evaluated during training, practice or competition for hydration status (pre- and post-session), fluid intake and sweat fluid and electrolyte (sodium, potassium and chloride) losses.
Individual-specific hydration and dietary strategies are provided to help each athlete more optimally prepare for, manage and recover from fluid and electrolyte losses incurred during training and competition. Thermal strain (core body temperature, heart rate and physiological strain index) can be monitored in selected individuals.
FITNESS TESTING (VO2MAX)
VO2max (maximal oxygen uptake) is the best measure of an athlete’s cardiorespiratory fitness. Also referred to as aerobic capacity, VO2max reflects the body’s ability to deliver and use oxygen to meet the energy demands of exercise. A high aerobic capacity is especially important in endurance-type activities (for example, distance running, cycling and swimming); however, it is also important to enhance recovery between brief intermittent bouts of high-intensity activity in other sports (such as soccer, tennis, basketball and football) during practice and competition. This is a progressive incremental exercise test using a treadmill or exercise bike, depending on the athlete’s primary sport or preference.
FITNESS TESTING (LACTATE THRESHOLD)
Lactate threshold (LT) reflects the exercise intensity at which the concentration of lactate in the blood increases sharply. LT is a very good predictor of sustained endurance capacity and performance and is also helpful in determining an athlete’s appropriate training intensity zones. A high LT is especially important in endurance-type activities (e.g. distance running, cycling and swimming). Tracking changes in LT can assist an athlete in assessing the effectiveness of his/her training over several months. This is a progressive, incremental workload exercise test using a treadmill or exercise bike, depending on the athlete’s primary sport or preference.
PRESENTATIONS AND WORKSHOPS
The Sanford Sports Science Institute can meet with coaches, support staff (e.g., athletic trainers and administrators) and teams to discuss sport-specific training and competition challenges and nutrition/hydration needs that can help athletes optimize training, performance and recovery. A particular emphasis is placed on the challenges and solutions to training and competing optimally in the heat, while reducing the risk for heat- and fluid/electrolyte-related problems (e.g., muscle cramps, pre-mature fatigue, exhaustion and hyponatremia).
On our website you can find all this information as well as videos explaining some of the tests more thoroughly. Moreover, we have great education materials you are welcome to print and/or share with your coaches, teams, children and friends. For more information and/or to book our services, feel free to call us at (605)-328-4750.