Joshua Manocherian on Sports Tech

The world of sport is continually changing over the years, and the use of technology is just one of those areas that has made an impact on many sports in the modern day. Important technology trends are taking the sports world by storm. From helping millions of people improve their fitness to transforming professional and collegiate programs into powerhouses, technology is here to stay. One criticism of the use of technology is that it can slow down the speed of the game, but on the other hand, many people believe that it makes watching their sport more enjoyable to see the correct decisions being made.

Most professional sports in the United States have long used instant replay and other high-tech aids to help referees make the right call. Gridiron has used video replay systems to check referees’ calls for many years. Basketball referees use replay systems to make sure players are shooting within the time allotted by the shot clock. One sport that has resisted the use of high-tech assistance until very recently is soccer/football. Replays could be used to decide off-side decisions, whether a ball passes over the goal line, and clarify penalty decisions.

One fast-growing trend will surface in the form of utilizing technology to help prevent injuries. Sports science companies are delivering results by collecting data, optimizing workout plans, and focusing on in-depth assessments of individual athletes and the ways they move and perform. These types of tools and more (including tools like wearable microchips embedded in clothing that monitor muscle fibers, heart rates, blood flow, and minute movement patterns) are quickly becoming standard issue for professional and college sports teams. As technology and sports continue to meld, advances could lead to dramatically improved performance not only in elite athletes but in any fitness enthusiast willing to explore the possibilities.