New study suggests athletes using DNA-matched training improved their performance almost three times more than those on mismatched programs. Edward Baran reports.
STORY: Reigning Olympic long jump champion Greg Rutherford is training hard for Rio. As part of his preparatory work, last year he took a test called DNAFit. The technology uses computer algorithms to decipher how to best train the body based on an individual's genetics. SOUNDBITE (English) GREG RUTHERFORD, OLYMPIC LONG JUMP CHAMPION, SAYING: "It's all very well going out there and running a certain amount of reps or doing a certain amount of things. What this does is it backs up exactly what my body's able to do and what is going to maximise my body." SOUNDBITE (English) AVI LASAROW, CEO OF DNA FIT, SAYING: "There's a number of elements in sports science that is used for athletes to excel and genetics is one of these components now which underwrites everything else." Within ten days of the swab test, the user receives a report suggesting whether they should focus on high or low intensity training and how sensitive they are to carbohydrates, alcohol, salt and saturated fats. This personalised report, based on gene varients analysis, helps to put an athlete on the path towards an optimal training routine. A new study backs this kind of DNA-matched training -- suggesting that athletes using it improved their performance almost three times more than those on mismatched programmes. The study, conducted at the University of Central Lancashire, reviewed the performance of 67 young sportsmen over eight weeks. The company behind the test says the average gym goer can also use it to help improve their performance. SOUNDBITE (English) PERSONAL TRAINER DAVID CASTRO-PEARSON, SAYING: "As we know many people hit plateaus in training so just to give you that head start, kick start I have found it worked well with my clients and they have definitely added a bit more impetus into their training." At the other end of the spectrum, elite athlete Greg Rutherford is hoping it might even help him go for Olymipic gold.