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Technology in Sports Assessment: Past, Present and Future

Reference:  D James, A Wixted, Technology in Sports Assessment: Past, Present and Future, 1 of 1-Conference of Science, Medicine & Coaching in Cricket 2010, 161

Abstract:  Technology continues to transform many aspects of our lives. The adoption of technology into sport is no exception where advances in materials, equipment design, clothing and more recently micro sensors have all had an impact on the practice and performance of sport. Today, micro sensors have been adopted by companies such as Nike, Apple, Nintendo and Polar as consumer
technologies for diverse markets such as gaming, telecommunications and sports. The range of sports where micro sensors have been used is extensive, accelerometers have been used in halfpipe snowboarding to detect air time and activity, in rowing to monitor athlete biomechanics and boat movement through the water, in running to generate force-plate simulations, contact time, step rate and other biomechanical information, in football to estimate energy expenditure, in swimming to count laps, monitor lap times and stroke rate. Coupled with high precision GPS these sensors give researchers the means to monitor the position, orientation, activity velocity and
aspects of biomechanics of runners, skiers, football players and rowing sculls just to name a few. In many cases this has provided new information or previously difficult to obtain information. The list is long and growing. For any sport, the question is, what can these sensors do for me? This might be answered by looking at the limitations of the sensors and the techniques used to extract information from the sensors. In this paper some examples of miniaturised technology using primarily inertial sensors are applied to a range of sporting applications yielding field based results analogous to those achieved in the laboratory but under typical training and sometimes
performance conditions.