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Five Exciting New Technologies Being Used in the Sports Industry

One of the most definitive tests for human athleticism is sports, but this does not mean that technology cannot facilitate it. When administering and officiating sports, technology can succeed where humans may not. This guarantees fair judgment of the performance and ensures that athletes win fairly. Here are five exciting new technologies being used in the sports industry today.

Instant Replay

Instant replay is an example of the remarkable technology being used in sports today. With this technology, officials are able to see exactly what happened, providing a second perspective on sports events. Instant replay is used in games like cricket, American football, rugby, soccer, and even in combat sports. However, FIFA banned instant replays on screens in sports arenas during the 2010 World Cup for fear that it might incite fans to behave untowardly.

Sensor Tools

Sensor tools are often used to analyze whether a goal is valid or not. It is often used in cases where the naked eye cannot truly tell if a ball went past the goal line. Different sports use varying sensor tools. For example, cricket’s Hawk-Eye technology analyzes sound to determine if the ball smashed into the bat before it was caught. Hawk-Eye is also used to determine where the ball would have landed if it had not hit a player’s foot. This establishes whether the ball was unfairly blocked from striking the wicket. On the other hand, tennis sensor tools use laser beams to determine whether the tennis ball went out of bounds or not. Sensor technologies help to accurately determine the position of the ball at a given time.

Timing Systems

Nobody uses a stopwatch when timing a race anymore. This means that differences in reaction time no longer affect the precision and consistency of a racing event. In many races today, the starter pistol is linked to a clock. Once the pistol goes off, the clock immediately starts timing the race. On the other hand, swimming uses a touch pad placed at the finish lanes as well as wearable inertial sensors to determine performance. Many racing events also use laser beams and photographs to determine winners.

The results of timing systems are often provided to the nearest thousand of a second. However, world and Olympic records are only recorded to the nearest hundredth of a second. This technique was established to eliminate insignificant errors.

RFID Chips

RFID chips are often used to time individual contestants in an event. The devices use antennas that relay wireless signals. RFID chips are often used in long distance races to help broadcasters and viewers track the exact locations of contestants during a race. There are two types of chips used in races: active and passive chips. Active chips have an in-built battery or power source and can determine the exact time a participant crosses a specific line. Passive chips can only be used with sensors placed in a mat because they do not have an in-built power source.

Equipment Development

In sports, safety is a key factor. Equipment manufacturers have developed devices to reduce injuries on athletes. In the 2010 season, special helmets were used in the National Football League after several players experienced concussion injuries. The helmets were designed to absorb shock caused by collisions and protect athletes from suffering head and neck injuries. Similar technology is being used for games like auto racing and hockey to enhance the safety of participants.

Technology has taken over today’s modern world. Many professional and amateur sports bodies have embraced new technologies featuring certain gears and gadgets to protect athletes and make it easier to officiate the games.

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