Axon Sports, GSK Human Performance Lab partner to boost the brains of elite athletes

Axon Sports, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cogstate Limited, has today announced that it has formed a partnership with the GSK Human Performance Lab, a world-class research facility focused on elite human performance.

Under the agreement, Axon Sports has made available its suite of advanced cognitive training programs for use by the facility. Additionally, Axon Sports, working with GSK sports scientists, will drive research and development of its newest cognitive sports training programs including those for football (soccer), cricket and rugby at the facility. 

The GSK Human Performance Lab is a global centre for excellence that is dedicated to deepening understanding of human performance across six core areas - strength, stamina, hydration, metabolism, recovery and cognition. 

Axon Sports president Jason Sada said it was a huge boost that the Company’s cognition technology had been selected to underpin this work and for use in related elite-level training and support programs at the GSK Human Performance Lab.

“At Axon Sports, we are focused on discovering the role of the brain in achieving superior athletic performances and developing innovative tools to train the unique cognitive tasks that are required,” Mr Sada said. 

“We are very proud to be partnering with the team at the GSK Human Performance Lab to understand and assist elite athletes in their complete body-brain preparation.”

Lab partners include professional athletes and sports teams, governing bodies for sports codes, and also military personnel and extreme explorers.

The partnership has already assisted explorer and ultra-athlete Richard Parks by preparing both his brain and body for his solo, unassisted and unsupported trek across Antarctica, a journey of 1,200km (745 miles). 

Parks completed cognitive assessment tests prior to leaving on his expedition in October 2013, and will use Axon Sports tools for cognitive priming during his trip.

The GSK Human Performance Lab combines GSK’s scientific expertise with external advisors and cutting-edge technology, and is performing both applied and discovery-focused research. 

The research carried out will help GSK Human Performance Lab scientists to develop improved training, recovery, nutrition and competition programmes for its partners, enabling them to break through the limits of human performance.

Partners will have access to both sport-specific and core cognitive training applications from Axon Sports to prepare the athletic brain for training and competition.

Ken van Someren, Head of R&D at the GSK Human Performance Lab, said: “Axon Sports is a key strategic partner of the GSK Human Performance Lab”.

“They will help us unlock the power of the brain; giving our partners better understanding of how the brain can drive and improve performance.” 

“Over time, the research and science behind our partners’ success will help GSK develop products that better meet the needs of all our consumers,” Mr van Someren said.

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