AlphaFit Advances Force Plate Testing with the Launch of AlphaFit Force Plate Frames
AlphaFit continues to lead as an innovator in strength and conditioning equipment as we announce the launch of our latest product, the AlphaFit Force Plate Frame. Developed in collaboration with the New South Wales Institute of Sport (NSWIS), these frames are set to redefine force plate testing for athletes and coaches across various disciplines.
AN EXCITING S&C PROJECT COLLABORATION WITH LEADING INDUSTRY STAKEHOLDERS
The inspiration for the AlphaFit Force Plate Frames came from the Head of Strength & Conditioning at NSW Institute of Sport, Dr Simon Harries, who identified critical issues with existing frames. The problems included functionality limitations, insufficient space, and a rigid bolt-down setup that hindered testing flexibility. Athletes, particularly during jump testing, found the setup encumbering, often affecting the accuracy of test results.
When asked for this insight on the project, Dr Harries said, "With the improved ease of use of force plate technology, more and more of our S&C coaches are utilising them to inform and provide feedback on the training process. However, at the New South Wales Institute of Sport (NSWIS), the constant relocation of force plates within our facilities to perform different assessments is not ideal. Many existing isometric testing racking systems, due to their narrow design, restricted athletes from performing dynamic tasks like jumping tests within the designated spacing. In response to this challenge, we started looking at what other options were available on the market, but found none that suited our specific needs."
Recognising the need for an innovative solution, AlphaFit collaborated closely and embarked on a comprehensive design and development process. The result is a state-of-the-art force plate frame that addresses all the shortcomings of its predecessors while introducing cutting-edge features to enhance testing accuracy and athlete experience.
Dr Harries went on to add, "We embarked on a project with the Australian Institute of Sport's (AIS) engineering team and AlphaFit to see if we could come up with a solution. Our NSWIS S&C team provided comprehensive specifications and typical use-case, highlighting the issues we wanted to solve. We essentially had three main requirements: a frame wide enough to perform jumping tasks within the rig, no reduction in integrity of the rig for isometric testing purposes (load rated to 1000kg), and we also wanted it relatively portable so it could be reconfigured, disassembled and moved around as we needed.
The AIS team designed a solution, enlisting AlphaFit's expertise to ensure manufacturability. We provided feedback along the way and iterated on bits and pieces until we were ready to manufacture a prototype."
AlphaFit Force Plate Frame Prototype Showcase: 2023 ASCA Conference, Gold Coast
PRODUCT REFINEMENT FOLLOWING FEEDBACK FROM STRENGTH AND CONDITIONING PROFESSIONALS
The development of the AlphaFit Force Plate Frames progressed through various stages, starting with a request from NSWIS, collaboration with various engineers, stakeholder reviews, and a prototype showcase at the 2023 ASCA International Conference on Applied Strength & Conditioning. After extensive market reviews and feedback from VALD and other stakeholders, AlphaFit made further refinements to ensure the product meets the highest standards.
The resulting design ensures precise measurement of athletes' performance in isolated movements. By addressing issues such as trip hazards, enhancing adjustability, and providing ample space for users to move freely, the result is an unencumbered testing environment, leading to more accurate athletic assessments.
The market response has been overwhelmingly positive, with NSWIS already receiving four AlphaFit Force Plate Frame kits. The product has generated interest from multiple elite sports clubs and institutes, with enquiries from the AIS, the Queensland Academy of Sport (QAS), the Victorian Institute of Sport (VIS), key premiership AFL clubs and beyond.
"We tested the prototype at the ASCA Conference on the Gold Coast and we're thrilled with the outcome. A few minor iterations later and we are very happy to get our hands on a handful of the new rigs; we now have one in each of our facilities. It has massively streamlined our ability to go between isometric and dynamic assessments, and best of all, we no longer have to move our force plates in and out of a rig." added Dr. Harries.
KEY FEATURES OF THE ALPHAFIT FORCE PLATE FRAME RANGE:
- Compatibility with VALD Performance ForceDecks: Designed to accommodate both VALD ForceDecks FDMax and FDLite models, ensuring versatility for different testing requirements.
- Configurability: The frames can be configured for both dual and single force plate testing utilising movable closed cell foam inserts, offering flexibility to meet a wide range of testing needs.
- Spacious and Strong Design: Ample space between uprights to provide athletes with the space they require, and alleviate any sense of confinement during testing. The ultra-low deflection frame ensures precision at high loads, boasting a 1000kg load rating and adjustable feet for stability on uneven surfaces.
- Adjustable Bar: The isometric single bar is adjustable in 20mm increments, specifically tailored for mid-thigh pull testing, catering to the diverse needs of athletes.
- Dual Grip Sizes: Two different grip sizes—33mm and 28mm Single Bar diameter—provide athletes with options for a comfortable and personalised testing experience.
- Centre Anchor Points: In the dual force deck setup, users can effortlessly lift and remove the centre foam piece to access a range of anchor points. With 23 adjustable positions, this feature caters to a variety of body types for resisted isometric testing using straps, grips, or belts.
- Anti-slip Ramp: Designed to add a greater surface area to the Force Plate Frame's platform, this additional accessory both simplifies access to the Frame and plays a crucial role in reducing the risk of injury during jump testing in the event an athlete lands beyond the designated force pad areas.
- Portability: The AlphaFit Force Plate Frames are designed to be portable, eliminating the need for a fixed setup. This feature ensures convenience and flexibility in testing locations.
- Safety Focused: The frames are engineered to accommodate ramps to eliminate trip hazards, and the Single Bar attachments feature AlphaFit's patent-pending Latch Pin locking system, prioritising the safety of athletes and testing professionals.
- Customisation: AlphaFit recognises the diversity of force plate brands in the market. On request, the Force Plate Frames have the potential for customisation to accommodate alternate brands’ hardware.
- Australian Made: AlphaFit Force Plate Frame and accessories are designed and manufactured in Australia with state-of-the-art equipment and the latest 3D modelling software to ensure they, and all our products, are fit for purpose.
Available in kits, and configurable to each coach’s testing requirements, the considered product range reinforces AlphaFit's commitment to providing cutting-edge solutions for the evolving landscape of specialty strength and conditioning.
CAN'T MEET YOUR FORCE PLATE TESTING NEEDS? WE HAVE THE SOLUTION FOR YOU.
AlphaFit's range of Force Plate Frames includes the Force Plate Frame FDLite and Force Plate Frame FDMax kits—both of which include a 33mm diameter Removable Single Bar—plus additional accessories of the Force Plate Frame Ramp and Force Plate Frame Removable Single Bar 28mm. Keeping efficiency in mind, should you have both VALD ForceDecks FDMax and FDLite models, our foam inserts can be sold separately enabling the two force plate variants to be used in the one AlphaFit Frame.
INTRODUCTORY OFFER: SPECIAL PRICING FOR PRE-ORDERS PLACED BY 29 FEBRUARY
Purchase via preorder now to secure your AlphaFit Force Plate Frame. Please note, orders placed by end of February 2024, for delivery end of May 2024. Once your order is received we will update you with expected manufacturing and dispatch timelines via email.