Performance Mouthguards

Is there a difference between performance and optimum performance? Of course there is! A split-second faster, a step quicker, an inch higher, a bit more flexibility, a little stronger can make all the difference in your game. Athletes are always in pursuit of an edge, that natural advantage that will help them train and perform better than the rest. For thousands of athletes, including professionals competing at the highest level, that performance advantage lies in a mouth appliance known as the Neuromuscular Mouthguard.

Real Madrid’s soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo, world number 1 tennis star, Rafael Nadal and NBA basketball star Shaquille O’Neal are among the myriad of high profile sport stars that attest to the advantages gained by the use of this appliance.

Fig 1. Braced for action: Cristiano Ronaldo reveals his performance mouthguard against Atletico Madrid (March 2010)

Fig 2. Rafael Nadal’s tennis bag contents.(courtesy of the tennis channel.)

Closer to home, Essendon FC team dentist, Dr Andrew Chio, with the team from The Dental Solutions, have also fitted this high tech mouthguard to a core group of players including Jobe Watson, Brent Stanton, Angus Monfries, Andrew Welsh, Henry Slattery, Scott Gumbleton, Brent Prismall and Ricky Dyson for the 2011 AFL season.

Fig 3-5. Jobe Watson, Brent Stanton and Angus Monfries with the NM mouthguards in action. (AFL season 2011)

Other noted AFL players utilising this technology include Jonathan Brown and Simon Black of the Brisbane Lions and Harry Taylor and Joel Selwood from the Geelong Football Club.

Fig 6.Simon Black and Jonathan Brown from the Brisbane Lions during their fitting appointment.

Although the development of mouthguards in sports had been primarily for protection and safety during physical contact, the potential to improve athletic performance by using a properly designed mouthguard is not a new idea. Dentists have, for many years, noted improvements in athletic performance when athletes used a properly designed mouthguard.

However, by the utilisation of the state of the art computerised instrumentation, the NM mouthguard takes these proven ideas to an entirely new level in terms of accuracy and predictability. Based on the principles of Neuromuscular Dentistry the entire fitting and fabrication process is backed by 40 years of science and neuromuscular research.

 Fig 7 and 8. The computerised diagnostic instrumentations used to aid the registration of the optimal jaw position of the athlete which is the key to the efficacy of the neuromuscular appliance

The NM Mouthguard is a sports appliance that is custom-designed and manufactured to each individual athlete/user. The appliance naturally aligns the athlete’s jaw, and in doing so, has been shown to enhance explosive power, balance, range of motion, flexibility, endurance and oxygen flow during training and competition, allowing the user to maximize their performance.

The process of properly aligning the jaw position, as mentioned, is based on the principles of Neuro-muscular Dentistry, which indicate that a “good” bite is achieved when the muscles of the face, jaw and neck are allowed to be at their most efficient state, which is a restful state. This in turn results in an immediate improvement in the following aspects:

  • posture
  • range of motion
  • flexibility
  • balance
  • strength

Fig 9. Angus Monfries and Andrew Welsh from the Essendon FC during their fitting appointment.

Anecdotal evidence and feedback from athletes have also indicated the potential of the appliance to facilitate increased endurance and faster recovery. We believe that these results flow from a combination of factors, including a more efficiently functioning neuromusculature, and enhanced oxygen flow through an increased airway.

Preliminary studies also indicate the NM appliance has the potential to reduce the production of the stress hormone cortisol during athletic performance. The appliance which optimises the position of the jaw prevents excessive teeth clenching and relieves pressure on jaw joints. The reduction of both activities in turn reduces the natural production of cortisol, allowing the body to unlock its full potential.

Available as an Upper protective guard (for contact sports), and Lower (for non-contact and training), the Neuromuscular Mouthguard delivers an immediate advantage to your body. No sports drinks, no supplements and no taking chances with your health or career – and the results are immediate.

Fig 10. The upper Neuromuscular Mouthguard and the lower training Neuromuscular Appliance.

About Arawatta Dental Centre

Dr Andrew Chio and Associates 40B Koornang Road, Carnegie, Victoria 3163 Australia
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