Elite footballers are increasingly turning to a device more commonly used by back pain sufferers to give them the edge against their competitors.
Use of the Nubax Trio, invented and developed in Western Australia, has become part of the training routine for a number of elite Western Australian players.
Prominent WA footballer Matt Priddis is just one player who has started using the Nubax Trio as a tool to stretch his back and to reduce the chances of injury.
Some players are even turning to the device to help loosen their back on game day, and can be seen on the sidelines stretching with their Nubax Trio.
The patented, portable unit uses traction to provide relief from back pain and improve mobility – suspending the user’s body over a common pivot point and safely allowing gravity to force the back and spine to stretch.
Sports Physiotherapist Chris Perkin - who works with some of Western Australia’s biggest football stars - said he had first become interested in trialling the Nubax Trio after it was clinically proven to improve movement and relieve lower back pain.
“This season we have begun using the Nubax Trio during weights/pilates sessions and on the sidelines during games because we believe it might give our footballers that extra boost they need to improve their performance on game day and to reduce and manage injury,” he said.
“We are always looking for ways to give our players the advantage and we think the Nubax Trio may provide that edge as part of an overall regime.
“While it might seem unusual for footballers to use a device that treats chronic lower back pain, there are sound reasons why it can be beneficial in the sporting arena.
“Many footballers have strong backs, taut with muscle and if imbalances exist this can lead to increased compressive loading on their spine - it makes sense that this compression needs to be relieved somehow.
“We are in the process of doing an informal study on whether the Nubax Trio improves players’ flexibility and sense of back stiffness.”