PLAY AT THE SPEEDPEED OF LIGHT

Leg­endary schemer Paul Sc­holes barely broke into a jog, but he was al­ways a step ahead of the op­po­si­tion. How? He had a se­cret weapon

Australian Four Four Two - - GOING FOR GOLD -

“You’ve got a kid who is smaller than most, he’s got asthma, he’s not the quick­est, but he’s the best player I’ve ever played with – work that out!” Gary Neville couldn’t ex­plain Paul Sc­holes’ ge­nius, but we think we can. Brace your­self: eight flash­ing lights. In­stead of load­ing up the squat rack, the pint-sized playmaker went head-to-head with the FitLight train­ing de­vice. Eight discs, which can be mounted to any surface, flash at in­ter­vals, chal­leng­ing the ath­lete to re­act at speed and de­ac­ti­vate them with a swipe of ei­ther their hands, feet, head or even a football. Re­ac­tion times are cap­tured by a tablet, ready for anal­y­sis. Us­ing the data, coaches can mea­sure speed, agility and co-or­di­na­tion. Sc­holes might have strug­gled to keep up with Cris­tiano Ron­aldo’s walk­ing pace, but his re­ac­tion speed was off the charts, says power devel­op­ment coach Mick Clegg, who in­tro­duced FitLight dur­ing his time with Manch­ester United. “With FitLight you’re able to train things that are di­rectly re­lated to what’s hap­pen­ing on the pitch,” he ex­plains.ex­plains “Paul Sc­holes wasn’t the big­gest or the quick­est but his re­ac­tion times were in­cred­i­ble – he was able to see ev­ery­thing ev­ery­thing. His brain was al­ways tick­ing away.” Train­ing like an 11-time Premier League win­ner is go­ing to cost you, mind. A stan­dard eight-disc pack­age will set you back $4,600 with a cheaper four-disc op­tion avail­able for $3,300 from fit­light­train­ing.com. Bet­ter start sav­ing...

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