Previously, sports training meant a lot of paperwork and post-practice efforts for both the trainer and the athlete. If you are wondering how? The trainers had to meticulously take notes and videos every time an athlete practiced. Then, the data had to be organized into graphs and charts representing the athlete’s performance over time. But thing’s don’t end there. After practice, the trainer had to work together will the athlete to discuss aches, pains, and any relevant thoughts about the training session that happened earlier.
Though it worked well for athletes and trainers, the system was indeed challenging. But that was the story until recently, when technology took over the sports industry, transforming the entire experience for trainers, event organizers, athletes, and the audience.
Thanks to all the advancements in the technological arena, sports have become more resilient and less burdensome over recent years, paving the way for new opportunities, particularly in the sports betting industry dominated by sites like BetOnline.
In simple words, technology is far more substantial in increasing athletic potential than whiteboards and post-practice reviews. In fact, it is revolutionizing sports training by live-tracking performances, enhancing communication, perfecting athletic movements, and eliminating injuries.
Now, let’s take a look at the top sports that are leveraging technology the best.
Radio Chip Trackers in Football
How can you be sure you are drawing the right conclusion about the numerous stampeding NFL players on the field?
You can’t solely depend on your eyes when involved in the decision-making process of such a significant event. For this reason, it is essential you leverage some sort of technology that makes the process unbiased.
This is where Zebra, a logistics company, comes in. Zebra was appointed as the US football league’s official “on-field player-tracking provider” last year. Zebra leverages the electro-magnetic radio-frequency identification technology, something that is commonly used in the retail industry to keep track of inventory and assets.
In the sports industry, on-field player-tracking involves two small sensors placed on the player’s shoulder pads. These tiny gadgets send signals 15 times per second to receivers placed between the upper and lower decks of the stadium. Well, American football or baseball is not just about funky looking T-Shirts, pants, boots, football socks, stirrups and baseball belts, it is more about the new technology used in game strategy, training and manufacturing playing accessories that have become slim, lightweight and more durable.
Regular GPS is only accurate up to three meters. On the other hand, Zebra can pinpoint a player up to 15 cm and tell the way they are facing. According to the vice president of Zebra, Jill Stelfox, American football is a contact sport. Meaning any tracking technology used must be able to detect and differentiate players in a pile.
Furthermore, Zebra also measures speed, acceleration, and distance covered—something that the NFL considers “next-gen stats.” The data will offer fans added insight into live broadcasts and feeds into the Xbox NFL app.
A lot of teams currently use Zebra, meaning mechanical load or the measure of how hard an athlete is working during practice. This will, in turn, enable them to create customized training programs that can monitor progress, minimize the risk of injury, and manage fatigue.
Being Bluetooth-enabled, the tags can be paired with other wearables like patches that gauge hydration and heart rate monitors.
Better Taekwondo Sensors Than Human Judges
If you are an avid Taekwondo fan, you would remember the 2008 Beijing Olympics where the referees failed to notice a high kick by the British athlete, Sarah Stevenson that would have otherwise won her fight.
Though she was reinstated to the competition later, the incident revealed a dark side of the sport—the fact that the Korean martial art form was prone to human error. Since then, numerous companies in the technological arena were trying to find a way around this issue.
As a result, combatants were seen sporting magnetic socks and body protectors with electronic sensors during the 2009 World Cup Taekwondo Team Championships in Baku. Similarly, the competitors’ headgear was hooked up, and they were allowed to request video replays during the Rio 2016 Olympics.
According to the director-general of the World Taekwondo Federation, Jinbang Yang, registering on the head protector takes much less power than the torso. This will help the athletes focus on accuracy than force. With all the technology involved, the fights will be more fairer, exciting, and safer in the upcoming years.