Wearable Technology: The Latest Trend in Professional Sports

professional sports

Wearable technology is leading a sports revolution. It is changing the definition of sports and the level and efficacy of the game. Because of wearable tech, fans can now enjoy really intense sports with athletic competence and mild to no injuries.

Many big leagues have assimilated various wearables in their games and practice sessions. Officials from these leagues are giving advice on how to incorporate wearable tech more efficiently in their games. Sean C. Sansiveri, VP Business and Legal Affairs, NFL Players Association, will be speaking at the WT | Wearable Technologies Conference 2018 USA in San Francisco on July 11-12.

We have made a list of 5 wearables satisfying the needs of athletes in different leagues. Please read on.

The Kinexon Tracking System. The Kinexon tracking system is being used at the 2017-18 Euroleague Basketball Adidas Next Generation Tournament Finals to measure detailed movements of players, as well as game officials. The use of the Kinexon is another example of Euroleague Basketball embracing the latest technological innovations. The players and game officials will be fitted with Kinexon’s tiny, lightweight sensor between their shoulder blades. Using unique RF technology, the sensors will document and dispatch information on position and movement precisely, allowing Kinexon to track player movements including acceleration and jump.

The Adidas miCoach Elite System – MLS. For the last 2 years, the Adidas miCoach Elite System is being used by Major League Soccer in American MLS games and European counterparts. The sensor is essentially fitted inside a gear or clothing that is able to determine athletic performance like speed, acceleration, power, distance, and heart. After collecting all the crucial data, miCoach sends it to the coach instantly, allowing him to monitor the performance of an individual player, and learn about possible concussions or injuries. miCoach was used successfully used by Germany during the 2014 World Cup in which they became the champion.

professional sports
The Adidas miCoach was used successfully by the German National Team during the 2014 World Cup.

Sensoria – PROFESSIONAL RACING. Sensoria deals with smart clothing and sports apparels. This US-based startup has collaborated with Renault Sports Technologies to produce a wearable in the form of a shirt that will work with an app to aid professional race car drivers. Sensoria will monitor the speed of the car, distance covered, track heart rate and send the information to a corresponding Smartphone app. Additionally, the wearable enables drivers to record a video of each lap and at the same time, monitor the basic elements such as acceleration forces and other vitals in order to enhance player performance.

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Catapult – NFL. Catapult is probably the first wearable that made its way across the professional sports league. This tiny device aims to reduce sports injuries during the high-intensity sports. It monitors data and alerts the player about injuries. Catapult sensor can track 100 metrics. It monitors speed, acceleration, heart rate, and distance covered and sends all the data to the coaches during the game. Nearly half of the NFL teams, 1/3 of NBA teams, and 30 major college programs use Catapult. It has also been ranked as number 12 on the list of the 50 most innovative companies in the world this year by Fast Company.

professional sports

ShotTracker – NBA. ShotTracker is a basketball wearable which is aimed to enhance player performance during game. The wearable consists of two parts: wrist sensor and net sensor. The sensors transmit data such as shots attempted, shots made, shots missed to a corresponding smartphone app. Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors has partnered with ShotTracker.

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Johanna Mischke () is Editor-in-Chief at WT | Wearable Technologies – the pioneer and worldwide leading innovation and market development platform for technologies worn close to the body, on the body or even in the body. Besides being an expert for wearables and their broader ecosystem she is experienced in the startup world and international marketing. Johanna can be reached at j.mischke(at)wearable-technologies.com.