From Belgium’s Golden Generation to AC Milan: CogiTraining-SenseBall has revolutionized players’ technical training
In addition to working for top clubs in the Belgian Pro League, Michel Bruyninckx has spent many years studying the effects of cognitive neurology, neuropsychology and neurobiology in sports.
His research helped him to conceive the CogiTraining method as well as the practice of SenseBall, a training system that has been embraced by the Belgian national team.
In collaboration with the Royal Belgian Football Association and the Catholic University of Louvain, Bruyninckx’s football training ball system has transformed Belgium’s fortunes at international level.
“I am convinced that I have mastered playing with both feet thanks to those exercises”, says Dries Mertens, an attacking winger with the Belgium national football team and SSC Napoli. “Congratulations to Michel Bruyninckx”, adds Belgian teammate Steven Defour: “He and SenseBall have helped me to become a pro”.
Defender Jan Verthongen (Tottenham Hotspur), midfielders Moussa Dembélé (Ex-Tottenham Hotspur) and Youri Tielemans (Leicester City) are among other Belgium internationals who have confirmed their faith in this method.
Using SenseBall for just 20 minutes per day makes it possible for footballers to touch the ball around half a million times per year, whereas traditional training methods allow players around a tenth of that amount.
It also teaches players to use both feet, helping to ensure that they are comfortable with the ball in all situations.
Research has also shown that the system can have positive effects off the field, with young footballers improving their school results by an average of 10% due to the improved brain organisation generated by the training method.
In addition to its successes in Belgium, the CogiTraining-SenseBall system is also having a big impact further afield.
Serie A club AC Milan have renewed their exclusive contract for a third season after enjoying tremendous success at youth level.
In France, FC Metz are exclusive partners for France with CogiTraining-SenseBall. The under 15 side, continuously trained with the programme, has won this season’s French championship, beating clubs like Paris St. Germain along the way. “I strongly associate CogiTraining and SenseBall with the success and progress of our players”, confirms Bertrand Antoine, head of pre-training at FC Metz youth academy.
Practiced by more and more professional youth teams such as RSC Anderlecht, KRC Genk, Club Brugge, Zulte Waregem, RCSC Charleroi, KV Oostende, Saint Trond, FC Nantes, FC Metz, LOSC Lille, Toulouse FC, Sporting Kansas City, Willem II, FC Lugano, APOEL Nicosia, Omonia Nicosia and FC Lugano, it seems highly likely that SenseBall will continue to grow in popularity over the coming years.