Friday, February 10th, 2012
Nike revealed a new addition to the Nike+ family this month, the Fuelband. In essence it’s a wristband that measures movement. That in its self is nothing novel, however the marketing guys at Nike have established a clever USP. Movements are measured using a new metric called NikeFuel. The more active you are the more NikeFuel you earn. A normal day of activity, for instance, would provide 2,500 points of NikeFuel, while a high-energy day would provide 5,500.
The technology used in the system and the conversion from movement to Fuel is a mystery, however, it is likely they use tri-axis accelerometer to track the intensity of active to be able to convert this to NikeFuel. Four pre-sets are available: time, steps, calories and NikeFuel. Users can set targets of how active they want to be throughout the day with the 20 LED light display transitioning from red-to-green based on how close they are to achieving their target. Data can be transferred to a computer through the USB function or wirelessly to a free iPhone app.
Some of Nikes top sponsored athletes including Lance Armstrong, Kevin Durant and Carmelita Jeter endorse the product.
Armstrong said, “What’s great about the idea of NikeFuel and the FuelBand is the way it provides real information and numbers to show how much people are doing all day, every day. That’s what will get people challenging themselves to do more and better their own scores. It’s a tool to get people more active.”
“NikeFuel means everyone can get recognition for activities they do,” said Durant. “It provides a scoreboard for your day and gets everyone moving.”
Jeter said, “You don’t have to be an elite athlete to appreciate how NikeFuel can motivate you. It’s an easy way to get credit for activities and compare how you do with others, even if you take part in different sports.
The Nike Fuelband hits the US on the 22nd February, the UK on the 1st May and the rest of the world in the summer, with an expected price tag around £100.
Article by David Rogers
Sunday, October 23rd, 2011
Press release from Loughborough University:
With a punishing training schedule and six matches under their belts, the rest and recovery strategies of the French and New Zealand teams will be as crucial as their match play tactics in the Rugby World Cup final this Sunday. Innovative sports science technology developed at Loughborough University has been helping many of the All Blacks squad to maintain peak performance.
The Canterbury Crusaders make up one third of the All Blacks Team. The devastating Christchurch earthquake in February 2011 placed a massive strain on the Crusaders, with their home ground closed for the entire season, they effectively played every match as an away game. However, using the Loughborough expertise, the Crusaders were able optimize their recovery in order to reach the finals of the national championship and have 10 of their players selected for the All Blacks Rugby World Cup challenge, with Richie McCaw as captain.
The innovative recovery expertise is the work of Dr Vern Neville, a professional America’s Cup sailor, scientist and coach who spent over a decade analyzing the behaviours and training patterns of elite athletes from the worlds of rugby, sailing, soccer, cycling and Formula 1.
Honing his research in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Science at Loughborough University (Team GB’s Olympic preparation base), Dr Neville sought programming expertise from Harvard and Stanford University alumni to create an intuitive web and smartphone based software for intelligent recovery. The software uses 13 daily evidence based inputs including resting heart rate, sleep, hydration, mood, appetite, muscle soreness and illness and converts these using smart analytics into a single recovery score. This enables athletes and teams to decide how hard to train and how much they should rest.
Commenting on the impact of the Loughborough expertise, Ashley Jones, the Canterbury Crusaders Physical Performance Co-Ordinator / Strength & Conditioning Coach from 2004 – 11, said: “With the use of Restwise (the software) we were able to ascertain which players needed extra sessions for recovery and also seeing which recovery modalities worked best with players, so in effect individualising the recovery as we do our physical training.”
“Recovery isn’t just important, it’s a biological necessity,” said Dr Neville. “Too little recovery and you slowly grind yourself down, risking both impaired performance and lowered immune function. Too much recovery and you don’t introduce enough stress to trigger physiological adaptation. You don’t get fitter, stronger and faster.” He continued: “Without a way to consistently and easily monitor recovery during high demand training or competition periods such as during the Rugby World Cup, even the best trained teams are at risk of over-fatigue or injury. This could well be the deciding factor in the outcome of the World Cup.”
Restwise has already been part of 38 world championship wins, gaining the respect of coaches and practitioners from the world of professional rugby, cycling and sailing as well as a host of Olympic sports.
Professor Myra Nimmo, Head of Loughborough University’s School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences where Vern undertook his PhD commented: “Restwise is an excellent example of how our world leading scientific research can be translated to deliver real impact in optimising sport performance.”
Wednesday, August 31st, 2011
Friday, August 19th, 2011
In this article, SPORTSTECHREVIEW introduces Rob Shugg co-founder of Kinetic Performance Technology Pty Ltd. Together with his partner Evan Lawton, they have created among many products, GymAware (http://powertool.gymaware.com/ ). Rob explains the technology:
Please introduce yourself?
Kinetic Performance was founded in 2000 by myself and Evan Lawton after 10 years developing sports science technology at the AIS. Since then we have developed a range of systems for use in elite sport with the aim of bridging the gap between sports science and practical application in sport. We have a very strong focus on making technology that is easy to use, robust and that “works as advertised”
How did you get interested in the sports industry?
We both enjoyed our time at the AIS and got to know many athletes, coaches and sports scientists. We could see so many opportunities to streamline the way these people work together. Back then, sports technology was a very new and exciting field. We realised in 2000 that to have a chance to fully implement these ideas, we would need to leave the safety of the AIS and set up our own company
What was your background before developing Gymaware?
Our background is firmly in engineering and technology, that’s our passion – 10 years at the AIS infused a sports flavour to our engineering, that’s grown steadily over the last decade.
What is Gymaware?
GymAware is a power measuring device for use in the weights gym. Power is the key ingredient in athletic performance and the most competitive teams train specifically for power. They develop training programs specifically to develop power and speed in the athlete. GymAware is used to both monitor the effectiveness of these programs, and to motivate athletes by giving them feedback while they train. With GymAware athletes can focus on performing high quality lifts that develop the performance traits they need to win. The gym is no longer just a place to bulk up and build strength, its now a pit stop to develop power, and finely tune the athlete.
Why is it unique?
GymAware is unique because it is simple enough for anyone to use. The concept of measuring power in the weights room has been around for at lease a decade. But it has been restricted to bulky, expensive, complex systems that require a sports scientist to operate. GymAware is small, portable and runs on Apple iOS (iPhone/iPad/iTouch) platforms. The user is up and running in less than a minute. The fully automated analysis give the user rep by rep readings on power, velocity and 11 other performance parameters. The simplicity of GymAware makes this elite sport training technology available to performance focused personal trainers and to serious amateur athletes.
Are there any top athletes using it?
GymAware is used around the world by sports institutes and top level teams and including Rugby,AFL,NRL, Premier League and others.
What’s the science behind it?
The Power Tool 5 is a Linear Position Transducer (LPT) specifically designed to measure speed and power of athletic movement, specifically in the weights room. It combines highly accurate digital position and time measurement, triaxial accelerometery (for measuring angle of lift) and state of the art signal processing to automate analysis of the individual lifts. It basically measures the movement path of the weights bar, weights stack, or of the athlete while they lift, throw, or jump.
How can our readers purchase Gymaware?
Interested readers can contact us at email@example.com for details on how they can purchase GymAware
Article by Bryan Roberts
Thursday, August 18th, 2011
New iphone app to measure your feet before going online. Have a look!