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Real Madrid's match-winning wetsuit

What do Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Maradona and, er, Mickey Rourke have in common? They all like to squeeze into rubber suits and frolic around in swimming pools, that’s what.

But before you let your filthy mind run away with itself, let FFT explain. This trio of A-listers use the Terry Nelson Mk X6 aqua running suit – codenamed TNAR Mk X6 – to do everything from preparing for a Hollywood blockbuster to rehabilitating their dodgy knees.

Thick padding on the shoulders, trunk and thigh areas keep wearers afloat, allowing them to train with an injury, with no impact on bones, joints or tissue.

Creator and former Liverpool youth-teamer Nelson, who worked with Real Madrid doctor Julio de la Morena on the design, says the suit allows a crocked player to train hard.

“In the past, whenever a player got injured he had to wait to get fit enough to run on the pitch, but with this there is no waiting time,” says Nelson, a double kidney transplant survivor and amputee who trains with a carbon fibre leg.

Nelson has also devised a series of aquatic workouts, which can aid recovery and increase speed, strength, agility and stamina.

Gregg Blundell, physio at Tranmere Rovers, is a big fan, saying: “It tilts the players forward slightly, which puts them in a more natural running position.”

“Keeping players buoyant enables them to move about freely and get a challenging aerobic workout without aggravating any knocks.”

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