British Taekwondo champion Tyrone Robinson has revealed that an important part of his training regime for the London 2012 Olympics is a bout on the latest fighting videogame Street Fighter IV.
Robinson, who is a British International Championship Gold Medallist and a European Championship Bronze Medallist in Taekwondo, is studying some of the moves in the game, hoping to be able to use them in his upcoming fights. Not only that, he says that using the game sharpens co-ordination and speeds up reflexes.
"I'm never going to be able to throw fireballs in the ring like the characters in Street Fighter IV, but I can still try some of the crazy kicks they do," explained the 22-year-old athlete.
"It's a good way to relax at the end of a hard day's training and great to have a tournament with friends."
Spinning bird kick!
Des Blackburn, Performance Analyst for Great Britain Taekwondo, agrees that videogames could be great for training athletes mentally.
"To complement their physical training our athletes are also encouraged, in their spare time, to play this type of game, as it is known that doing so can increase their attention span, depth perception and hand-eye co-ordination; though this is always recommended as an addition to their physical training and never as a replacement!"