Have you ever asked yourself what the next big technological advancement will be when it comes to sport? Just like all the different forms of technology available in this day and age, sports technology is constantly evolving.
From the days of the stopwatch to the modern wearable technology and even tracking devices, the advancements are there for all to use and see.
There are numerous examples of technology being used in the sporting circle. So, let’s take a look at some of the latest technologies that have had the biggest impact on the sports world in recent years.
Prosthetic devices for disabled athletes
Back in the day, when a practicing or aspiring athlete became physically disabled, their participation in competitive and even recreational sport came to a painful end.
Today, that is no longer the case. Thanks to the technological advancements with sports techs, being disabled means you still get to partake in your favorite sports, albeit in a different way.
All you need to do is find a good prosthetics doctor who will carefully analyze your case and design a special suit to enable you to participate in your desired sport effectively.
Prosthetic devices are highly personalized that you can’t just buy one off the shelf. You must first go through a motion study after which the perfect suit is designed for your needs.
You’ve likely seen athletes wearing fancy wristbands and special shoes when training. This is another technology that has revolutionized the sporting world.
For both individual players and teams, wearable technology can significantly improve performance and safety. A small wristband, for instance, can be designed to capture vital data such as speed, accuracy, time, and so on – all at once. Some even capture stride, a number of steps, and a whole host of metrics. This data can be used by any athlete or team to boost performance.
Additionally, modern wearable devices have also been designed to capture vital health data including heart rate, blood pressure, and heart rate. Such data can help prevent injuries and other health emergencies like heart attacks and heat strokes among sports people.
Technology for wind sports
All this new technology cuts across other sports with wind and kitesurfing being at the forefront. With wind and kitesurfing so reliant on the elements, this can have a massive impact on performance
Therefore, the latest cutting edge technology has been applied to this sport to help develop wind propelled surfing kites that help the user master the elements in the ultimate “man against the elements” battle.
A good example is the Pre-Stress technology that allows the manufacturer to create thinner and lighter boards, which are still more durable.
Virtual Reality (VR)
This list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Virtual Reality (VR). Though still in its infancy stage, this is another technology that has had a huge impact on sports. Among fans and recreational athletes, in particular, VR could be the next big thing!
For fans, the thrill of watching a sporting activity as if you were at the event in person is something that excites pretty much everyone. It’s unlike anything that we’ve ever seen before. HDTV and 4K will make the headlines in the meantime. However, once fully adopted, the experiences won’t’ even be comparable – VR takes you to a whole new world.
The same can be said about the recreational sports world – people who play for fun rather than competition. Enthusiasts will soon be playing with or against opponents located in faraway places – without feeling the distance one bit. How people purchase equipment will also change. Rather than drive to a sports store, you’ll be able to view everything and make selections from home – as if you were inside the store!
Player tracking technologies
Finally, in a bid to boost performance, players and teams are also increasingly investing in tracking technologies. Don’t confuse this for wearable technology. While some elements of wearable technology such as heart rate monitors have tracking capabilities, dedicated tracking technologies cover a lot more than that.
Take the example of a humble scoreboard. A scoreboard makes use of state-of-the-art cameras strategically positioned throughout the sporting venue to accurately determine winners of an event. These cameras are so accurate that in a running race, for example, you are able to break the footage down into micro-frames to determine the winner in the event of a very close finish.
Another example is the Hawk-Eye. First used in tennis and cricket, Hawk-Eye technology, designed to closely analyze the path of an object being used in sports competitions, is now a mainstay in at least a dozen different sports. By analyzing the movement of objects, balls, in particular, judges and referees are not only able to make error-free calls, but it also greatly reduces any delays in the game.
In a Nutshell
Technology is now part and parcel of sports, which is actually a good thing as different sports technologies are boosting performance, improving viewer experiences, and even saving lives. Past performance data can be used to enhance individual and team performance; technologies like AI and VA vastly improve the fan experience, and equipment such as new-era helmets significantly reduce the risk of injury.