The WRU have received yet another technical edge through their partnership with Under Armour, Inc. (NYSE: UA), when every member of Warren Gatland's 34-man squad was fitted for Under Armour Performance Mouthwear.
Under Armour Performance Mouthwear is an innovative new line of custom mouthpieces and mouthguards that provide athletes in any sport the ability to unlock their full potential. UA Performance Mouthwear powered by ArmourBite™ Technology can help any athlete improve strength, endurance and reaction time, reduce athletic stress, and with the mouthguard, reduce impact from blows to the jaw.
The performance benefits and protections of ArmourBite Technology arrive for the team just ahead of the fourth round of the RBS Six Nation's tournament, which kicks-off Saturday, 13th March when Wales face Ireland at Croke Park. The Wales - Ireland matchup is always a key game in the tournament; spectators are assured a major effort from both teams with every player put to the test. It is for this sort of activity exactly that Under Armour's Performance Mouthwear was designed.
When athletes exert themselves, clenching the jaw is a natural reaction. Teeth-clenching, however, triggers the excess production and release of hormones, such as cortisol, that produce stress, fatigue and distraction, hindering an athlete's performance. ArmourBite Technology in UA Performance Mouthwear prevents an athlete's teeth from clenching, relieves pressure on the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), and prevents the excessive production of performance-sapping hormones.
The players are phasing in this new technological advance for match days, with gum-shields being a particularly personal piece of kit.
ArmourBite, the patented technology in UA Performance Mouthwear, was created by Under Armour's partner Bite Tech, Inc., a US-based company that has spent over 15 years conducting research and science on developing mouthwear products that improve athletic performance.
The likes of fly-half Stephen Jones, full-back Lee Byrne, and prop Paul James are reaping the benefits of the innovative Performance Mouthwear along with a long list of American sporting heroes, including Adrian Peterson, Running Back, Minnesota Vikings; Hunter Mahan, PGA Pro; Marian Gaborik, New York Rangers, NGL All-Star; David Ortiz, Boston Red Sox; and Chris McCormack, Pro Triathlete, AUS Olympian and 2-Time Kona World Champion.
"I really like the concept behind the technology and have been wearing the mouthguard in all the Six Nations matches so far. The idea behind them has some real merits; you've got to try anything that can give you an edge at this level. I'm fascinated by the potential these guards have to enhance performance on the pitch," said Jones.
"I've been using it in place of my normal mouthguard in matches and am getting more and more comfortable with it. The body is obviously under intense pressure, in the scrums in particular for a prop, and it's in those kinds of moments when the technology is designed to give you an edge. It's not something you think about during the heat of the battle, but it's great to know the scientists behind this technology have done that thinking for you," added James.
About Under Armour, Inc.
Under Armour® (NYSE: UA) is a leading developer, marketer, and distributor of branded performance apparel, footwear, and accessories. The brand's moisture-wicking synthetic fabrications are engineered in many different designs and styles for wear in nearly every climate to provide a performance alternative to traditional natural fiber products.
The company's products are sold worldwide and worn by athletes at all levels, from youth to professional, on playing fields around the globe. The Under Armour global headquarters is in Baltimore, Maryland, with European headquarters in Amsterdam's Olympic Stadium, and additional offices in Denver, Hong Kong, Toronto, Guangzhou, China and Jakarta, Indonesia.
For further information, please visit the company's website at www.underarmour.com
Wales head coach Rob Howley explains his decision to change the captaincy of the national side with Ospreys second row Alun Wyn Jones taking over from Sam Warburton for the forthcoming RBS 6 Nations. Howley is hoping his decision will allow Warburton to rediscover his 'mojo'.
How do you follow a dancing hippopotamus - the Ospreys wheelchair rugby team has just the 'oneness' to do it say the BBC! For a decade the sight of a herd of hippos synchronised swimming around their own private blue lagoon, has lit up our television screens at regular intervals between favourite BBC One shows. But now the nation's most watched channel has relinquished its famous amphibious mammals in favour of a new show-reel which includes the Ospreys wheelchair rugby team.
Head coach Rowland Phillips and key front rower Carys Phillips look ahead to games against Spain and Ireland as Wales Women ramp up their preparations for the forthcoming Six Nations. The two warm-up games are a 'massive opportunity to refine the squad' according to the Welsh camp.
Martyn Phillips has discussed details of the newly published 'Strategy for Welsh Rugby' which puts in black and white terms the plans and direction of the governing body of the national sport in Wales for the next decade.
WRU chief executive Martyn Phillips has urged Welsh rugby fans to follow in the footsteps of their soccer counterparts at last summer's Euro Championship by backing their team to the hilt in the upcoming RBS 6 Nations campaign.
Chief executive Martyn Phillips has highlighted the plans for Wales to become a breeding ground for national and elite club rugby coaches, which are contained in the WRU's 10-year 'Strategy for Welsh Rugby'.
Andrew Coombs is enjoying his new role as Nelson forwards coach. The former Dragons and Wales lock has big ambitions to become a professional coach but feels it's important to learn the ropes in grassroots rugby and where better than his home club Nelson, with friends and family close to hand.
Students at Brynllywarch Hall School, near Newtown, have transformed their own lives, and are now having a positive impact on others through rugby. The sport has had a life-changing effect on the well-being of the students who are now delivering rugby sessions to local primary schools and playing for a new mixed ability side
Wales reached their first semi-final since 2013 in the opening round of this season's HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Dubai. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie recaps on what proved to be an eventful tournament
Wales and Ospreys back row James King, who came through the North Wales age grade system, nominated North Wales Regional Community Rugby Manager Marc Roberts, in the WRU's 'Diolch' initiative where squad players thanked those who played a part in their rise to the top.
Beating Merthyr has boosted Carmarthen Quins hopes of reaching a top eight spot in the Principality Premiership. Quins captain Haydn Pugh is delighted with his team's progress and is determined that everyone from the Under 6s through to the senior team, enjoys the ride.
When the Wales squad were asked to nominate individuals who played a big part in their early playing days, Wales and Dragons full back and wing Hallam Amos thought of his former Monmouth School rugby coach John Bevan.
Sam Cross and Luke Treharne have been named as co-captains of the Wales Sevens side as head coach Gareth Williams names his 12-man squad to play in the first leg of the HSBC World Series in Dubai next weekend.
Bedwas head coach Steve Law and players Nicky Griffiths and Alun Rees extol the virtues of the close knit club as they prepare to host third place RGC 1404 - who are one place head of them on the Principality Premiership points table - on Saturday.