The global multisport impact of the NordBord

Hamstring strain injuries (HSI) account for around 16% of all injuries in athletes and are the most prevalent cause of lost time from competition. In addition to the associated physical issues, hamstring strain injuries have a significant psychological impact on athletes who are forced to miss some, and potentially all of their competitive seasons.  

Alongside the associated performance issues, the financial consequences can be considerable. However, incomplete understanding of hamstring strain injury and re-injury risk has led to poor diagnosis, and limited preventative measures and rehabilitation programmes. 

To address this need, an international collaboration founded by Dr Morgan Williams, University of South Wales (USW); Dr Anthony Shield, Queensland University of Technology, and Dr David Opar, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, was established.  

Research by the group has been used to provide an evidence-based framework to inform diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of HSI (as well as other common lower extremity muscle injuries in sport) and has transformed HSI prevention and rehabilitation in multiple sports worldwide. 

The research identified the need for a field-based hamstring testing system which led to the development of a novel prototype device for conditioning, monitoring and screening athletes for hamstring strain injury risk. This innovative technology was patented and commercialised by Vald Performance as the NordBord in 2016.  

Since its commercialisation, the NordBord has become the gold standard for field-based hamstring testing. Core to the commercial success of the device, and its integration into athletic, clinical, personal, and applied practice, is the group’s underpinning body of empirical research that supports it use. 

The NordBord is now used by hundreds of clients worldwide to reduce hamstring strain injury occurrence and improve athlete performance, including professional sports teams from the English Premier League football; Rugby Union, Major League Baseball, American Football, National Basketball Association, National Hockey League; Australian professional rugby league, Australian Rules Football, national governing bodies across a wide range of sports and countries, as well as universities, clinics and medical research centres. 

Vald Performance have rapidly expanded into a multi-national company specialising in the development of laboratory-grade technology to support the welfare and performance of athletes, with offices in Australia, USA and the UK.