A better understanding of training and development has transformed what athletes look like. While they still must stay in top shape, the edge no longer goes to whoever is simply the biggest and strongest on the field or court.

Speed of foot has been measured for decades but now there are better ways to measure speed of mind, which is making the difference between great athletes and their competition.

“Athletics is just so elite these days that milliseconds matter,” Matt Roda, Chief Marketing Officer at Reflexion said.

Reflexion is a service that tracks and trains the neurocognitive skills in athletes with a platform operated on a 2-inch-by-six-inch LED touchscreen.

“There’s a whole bunch of things that can be done for athletes, but in terms of preparation, really what you want to be doing is making sure that you’re not ignoring the mental piece of it, and training and preparing from that standpoint,” Roda added.

As more data becomes available and better understood, sports teams and organizations are using off-field training to improve their players in ways that on-field work or gym-based exercises cannot. Those that do not sharpen their cognitive skills with available technology run the risk of being milliseconds behind, which can make all the difference in any competition.