Thursday, 21 June 2012
Australia's Olympic athletes will have every opportunity to gain a vital edge with state-of-the-art analysis and recovery centres on their doorstep in London.
Still clinging to hopes of finishing in the top five on the medals table, Australian officials are hoping the difference between gold and silver or bronze and fourth might be found in the 24-hour performance analysis facility or the recovery centre.
Known as the Green and Gold Room, the analysis facility is a short walk from the village in Olympic Park and will give athletes and coaches access to video and editing services to analyse their day's performance and how it can be improved.
It will be a truly 24-hour a day operation.
Even while athletes are sleeping in London, Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) staff back in Canberra will evaluate the videos.
And the facility also has beds for staff working overnight on delivering morning review sessions.
"The Green and Gold Room being established in partnership with the AIS will ensure the coaches have access to state of the art equipment and technology and world class performance analysts," AOC president John Coates said on Thursday.
"It will give our athletes a much needed edge.
"It's recognition that the Australian Institute of Sport is at the cutting edge when it comes to best practice in sports science and medicine."
Coates and federal sports minister Kate Lundy on Thursday unveiled details of the joint initiative of the AOC and AIS which is part of an extra $4.5 million of government funding.
The funding also paid for the recovery centre at the nearby John F Kennedy School in Stratford.
The AOC announced last year it had signed an agreement with the special needs school, which has specialist hydrotherapy and cold water pools.
The centre also includes rehabilitation equipment, psychological support, spin bikes, massage and physiotherapy.
Six medical personnel, including a recovery physiologist, a psychologist and four soft tissue therapists will work at the centre, in addition to Australia's staff and facilities already at the athletes' village.
Although Coates is confident Australia can finish in the top five, the latest analysis of results has the team slipping to a predicted seventh.
Sports information group Infostrada's monthly virtual medal table predicts Australia will win 10 gold medals, 12 silver and 18 bronze.
But Coates is hopeful recent good results in rowing, equestrian, sailing and shooting are a sign Australia can lift back into the top five.
Germany, Britain and France occupy fourth, fifth and sixth places behind the big three, the US, China and Russia.
Infostrada predicts Australia's arch rival Britain will win 17 gold.