November 21, 2011 BY John Kim
With Nike taking the helm of the NFL’s on-field jerseys and equipment in 2012, consumers and athletes can expect an even more emphatic focus on one of Nike’s most indestructible pillars – Nike Training. Nike invited select media from around the globe to experience Nike Football at its finest, outlining its earliest and most honored roots and introducing some new and innovative products. At center stage of the information session was the revolutionary Nike SPARQ Sensory Performance, which, according to Nike SPARQ Performance Director Paul Winsper, allows them to ‘integrate both sensory and physical training together’ and build the best athletes in the world. Pittsburgh Steelers Quarterback and Oregon Ducks alum Dennis Dixon demonstrated a few of the tailor-made Nike SSP drills, which we, in a nutshell, can describe as an exponentially advanced form of rubbing your belly and patting yourself on the head simultaneously. Trust us – it’s a lot tougher than it sounds. The results of the SSP tests could then be compared to scores achieved by others in the same sport, giving the athlete an idea of where improvements could be made and to highlight the athlete’s peak talents. Dr. Alan Reichow, Global Research Director of Nike SSP, boils it down even more concisely by stating that SSP allows the athlete to ‘see sport better’.
In addition to the Nike Football/Training educational experience, the media attendees were given a rare opportunity to test Nike’s newest training tools side-by-side with top-flight football players at Nike World Headquarters as well as on the Autzen Stadium field (home of the Oregon Ducks). The marquee training tools introduced during the training session was Nike Hyperwarm Shield Mock Top and the Nike SPARQ Vapor Strobe Eyewear (available online and at select retailers for $300); the Vapor Strobe is a high-tech set of stylish goggles that purposefully inhibits an athlete’s sight via vision-blocking blinking strobes at various frequencies, allowing the athlete to rely on and refine sensory abilities. NFL superstars such as Greg Jennings, Darrelle Revis, and Larry Fitzgerald have trained with the Vapor Strobe and have individually concluded that Nike’s state-of-the-art Training methods as well as the advanced performance gear have directly contributed to their individual success in a sport that rewards training more than any other. Nike has played a major role in the overall increase in athleticism and performance in the NFL for decades, and with the implementation of Nike SPARQ Sensory Performance and game-changing tools like the Vapor Strobe, expect the bar to be raised even higher.