EQUIPMENT TEST: POWER BALANCE BANDS

When we posted a piece on Power Balance bands during Pre-Season, to say there was a difference of opinion was an understatement!

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

Some swore by the silicon and mylar contraptions, whereas others dismissed them as a placebo effect at best.

But after seeing an increasing number of pro’s wearing the hologram-bands – including Goldenballs; Mr Beckham himself – we knew that we had to give this a go for ourselves.

So, we set about trying to test Power Balance based on opinion from the Footy-Boots.com staff, but that was just as dived as the comments field of that first article, with some FB Staffers boasting their ‘best pre-season yet’ in the bands, whereas others were swift to dismiss them as hoodoo.

With anecdotal evidence and opinion out of the window, we took Power Balance to the training pitch to see if it would help us complete some of our most hated drills!

The Method

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

Each test would be run a total 9 times – 3 times with a Power Balance band, 3 times without and 3 times with one last time of two bands.

One of these bands was just a plain LiveStrong band, and the other was a Power Balance band – both were wrapped in tape so looked identical, the reason for this was to test the placebo effect of the band, and see if not knowing which band was being worn effected time.

Best time of each run recorded, 90 seconds rest between every run.

Arrowhead Agility Test

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

The perfect test of the Power Balance’s claim of increased balance. The Arrowhead Agility test requires great co-ordination and deft feet to get right, due to the quick changes of direction required.

Right hand test

With Power Balance: 7.9s

Without: 7.6s

Mystery Band: 7.8s (mystery band was not a Power Balance Band)

Left hand test

With Power Balance: 7.2s

Without Power Balance: 7.4s

Mystery Band: 7.3s (Mystery band was a Power Balance Band)

100m Sprint.

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

One of the key elements of football nowadays is Speed, (hence the vast influx of lightweight football boots!) – So if Power Balance to decrease the time it takes me to cover 100m, then it’s probably worthwhile. 2 x 50m sprints, with a turn in back to the start.

With Power Balance: 16.0s

Without Power Balance: 16.0s

Mystery Band: 16.1s (Mystery Band was not a Power Balance Band)

3 Stage Shuttle Run

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

Everyone hates shuttle runs, but they’re a great test of endurance if done correctly – here was my method. Start on stomach, sprint to first station, sprint back return to stomach – sprint to second station, run backwards to start, sprint to third station, straight sprint back.

This variety of shuttle is a great way to test everything the band claims to enhance, with strength, balance and power all being put to the sword.

With Power Balance: 21.1s

Without Power Balance: 21.6s

Mystery Band: 21.8s (Mystery Band was not a Power Balance Band.)

Conclusion

Footy-Boots.com exclusively tests the controversial Power Balance Band

Somewhat disappointingly, the Power Balance band test was drastically inconclusive. When trying to pin down any sort of measurable advantage it had over not wearing one, any time there was one, it was slim at best.

Interestingly, though, whilst the straight-line sprints were a dead heat and the difference in times taken for the agility test was minimal at best, the shuttle runs – the most complex and testing of all three tests yielded the biggest difference.

Whether it’s in line with the Power Balance philosophy that it only enhances complex extended periods of physical activity – I’m not sure – but it does explain why most people that wear Power Balance seem claim they feel better on the pitch, rather than a quantifiable improvement on the training ground.

That said, for some reason I can’t stop wearing mine for matches – I’m a complete sucker for superstition (I always try and eat the same things before matches, same warm-ups etc.) and after a couple of decent performances in mine, I’m stuck with it!

Even though the numbers suggest there’s nothing to it, (even the placebo effect is minimal) I still like to wear it every time I play.


18 Comments

  • i have 1 of these which i wear all the time however 1st game i wore it in pre season i managed to tear my achillies tendon so dont think il b wearin it in games when im fit again

  • @BiyiAdetunji: lol, yes nice & long review but seems like the conclusion that it is a bull -more or less 😀

    @phil: aw c’mon phil… u can do better than that if u wanna stood up for this item. everybody knows if u got better balance, overall u’ll get faster. try sprinting with one of ur hand tight to ur back and ur head tilt to one side… or one foot wearing running shoes with high profile outsole and barefoot on the other.
    cuz eventhough i’m not supporting this ***t, but deep down inside i truly wanted to believe that such item that could miraculously make me stronger, faster, more agile just by wearing it actually exist, haha 😀

  • A few days ago,the Amsterdam University came with their research results of the use of power balancing bracelet . The conclusion was: it does not work. It is a scam. Its fake.

    It hit the news big in our country.

  • i never said i wanted to get faster i was jst wearing it in the game. i certanly ent blaming my injury on the band just that im a superstitous player so wont wear it next game i play thats all

  • I cannot believe there are humans out there that can be stupid enough to buy this junk. I guess our primate brains are capable of believing anything that sounds good…

  • The band is suppose to help with balance, core strength, and flexibility. so the test you ran will of course be inconclusive. And placebo or not people still come into my store specifically asking for the bands and we sell hundreds upon hundreds of them.

    P.s I believe you should do some balance, core strength and flexibility tests, then you will see some better results. Do it with out the band then with it then without again. and you can see the difference.

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