David BeckhamPATCH OF THE DAY

By Jilly Beattie and Andy Lines 21/11/2005

Becks' fresh bid to boost energy

DAVID Beckham has been wearing small stickers on his chest to boost his fitness levels as the World Cup approaches.

During games the 30-year-old Real Madrid star has the patches positioned on key pressure points, they work by releasing amino acids which stimulate the body to slowly pump out extra energy, according to the makers.

Becks and his Real team-mates are the first in Europe to experiment with the patches called Lifewave energy boosters.

The stickers are widely used by sports stars in America and were introduced to the Spanish club by president Emilio Butragueno.

A Real source said: "These men are athletes, but even athletes get tired especially when they're playing at world-class level.

"Using the patches has helped boost their own natural capabilities and the joy is that there are no chemicals in them."

Lifewave's European director Nigel Allan added: "I'm not surprised Becks uses the patches, because they work.

"They're a natural product that increases energy by up to 40 per cent. They enable the body to release it steadily and for longer. They contain no chemicals, no toxins, in fact nothing from the patch even enters the body."

But experts are sceptical about the patches. American Academy of Medical Acupuncture chief Dr Bryan Frank called on the makers to explain exactly how they work and doubted the claim nothing enters the body. He said: "When you say amino acids, that could be anything. It sounds like a vague description because they don't want to say what it is.

"It would not surprise me to see sporting federations ban that type of thing unless the company comes forth with specific data showing exactly what it is."

Acupuncturist Dr Joseph Acquah added: "The question is whether it's stimulating the body's electrical field. I've never seen a scientific study that shows you can use amino acids to change electrical currents."

The patches may boost energy but they clearly do not make stars play any better - as Becks and his team found out on Saturday night when they were thrashed 3-0 by Barcelona.

Perhaps Beckham's energy has been drained recently while he has been teaching wife Victoria to drive her £55,000 BMW in busy Madrid.

She was nervous about being on the wrong side of the road, but last week 31-year-old Posh was spotted driving the motor without her tutor for the first time. A source said: "Victoria has David to thank for getting her back on the road."

Lifewave Patches