Novak Djokovic wins French Open with his 'nanotech' patch, but what is it?

Called TaoPatch, the device has nanocrystals that use body heat to function, but does it really work?
Ameya Paleja
Novak Djokovic after winning his 23rd Grand Slam title
Novak Djokovic after winning his 23rd Grand Slam title

Getty Images 

Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic secured his name in tennis history by winning a record 23rd Grand Slam tournament at the French Open in Paris last night, defeating the Norwegian Casper Ruud in the final.

The win takes him ahead of Spaniard Rafael Nadal (22) and Swiss legend Roger Federer (20) for the most Grand Slam wins ever n the history of the sport.

The controversial star is well-known for promoting wellness fads and pseudoscience and was spotted wearing a 'nanotechnology patch' throughout the tournament in Paris.

When probed by the media, Djokovic responded that he was trying to imitate Iron Man.

Many assumed that the tennis star was making a joke, something that the internet also picked up.

But the makers of the 'nanotech' patch were not willing to let this free marketing opportunity slip by and have pushed their product wherever they have found it mentioned on the internet.

Taopatch: A Nanotech Arc Reactor?

Before you start wondering if the tennis player has gone beyond the likes of the fictional Tony Stark and managed to secure a nanotechnology-powered arc reactor, let's get into what we know so far.

The device under the spotlight is called TaoPatch and is made by Tao Technologies, an Italian company that claims to "create and patent innovative nanotech products for human health and well-being".

According to its website, the TaoPatch contains nanocrystals that convert the body heat into light and send them to specific acupuncture points in the body helping it "remember" how to communicate with the rest of the body.

The crystals are claimed to have multiple health benefits such as improving posture, relieving pain, and also boosting athletic performance.

Djokovic even went on to say during a media interaction that it was the "biggest secret of his career" and without the device, he would not have achieved what he has professionally.

The TaoPatch actually comes in two variants, Start and Sport, each giving away a different number of "therapeutic signals". The Sport patch is available for sale on its website for a price of $266.

Novak Djokovic wins French Open with his 'nanotech' patch, but what is it?
Screen grab of Djokovic wearing the patch as displayed on Taopatch's website

Does it work?

A user interested in using the patch needs to slowly introduce his/her body to the crystals and not wash them with anything other than warm water and soap if they want it to remain effective.

Each crystal lasts for three years, as per the documentation, seen by The Telegraph and Djokovic's crystals probably ended their tenure during the game. That's why he had to change them mid-game as seen in the video above.

Tao Technologies does not really offer much other than a 2018 study of 30 healthy participants as scientific proof that the crystals do their job.

In the study, the patch-wearing group demonstrated improved balance control, which improved their posture.

For those who have followed Djokovic's career in the past few years, it would not be surprising to know that a lack of a body of evidence would not deter the man from his beliefs.

At the height of the COVID pandemic, he refused to take a vaccine fearing it would affect his athleticism, even if it meant that he would miss major tournaments in Australia and the U.S.

Even if one were to give him the benefit of the doubt for the hasty approvals of vaccines, Djokovic also put off a much-needed elbow surgery hoping that his body would heal on its own. When his body refused to heal, Djokovic did undergo the surgery but has stayed away from gluten after he was "diagnosed" to be intolerant after a test that reportedly involved holding a slice of bread to his stomach.

For a man with such bizarre ideas of what is scientific, and what is not, it is not surprising to learn that he considers 'light-emitting crystals' to be nanotech.

Perhaps if he been introduced to the device at the time of his birth, he might have finished winning major titles in football, baseball, cricket and gymnastics prior to starting his career in tennis.

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