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Trent Edwards

49ers turn to virtual reality technology for practice edge

You know your product is effective when a 12-year veteran quarterback like Tony Romo, for whom breaking a huddle is as routine as brushing his teeth, forgets he's in a room wearing goggles and headphones and instead believes he's on the practice field about to run a play. His muscles tense. He gets in his quarterback stance. His hands twitch in anticipation of taking the football. "We call this 'presence,'" said Jeremy Bailenson, an associate professor at Stanford and an expert in virtual reality. "Presence is a psychological state where you completely forget there's a physical world and you completely buy into the illusion. With football players ......

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