Getting in the groove: Researchers have built a wireless system that gathers massive amounts of data on McMahon’s shooting skills as she tests the device at the Australian Institute of Sport.
Helmer has synchronized the auditory information with the arm and wrist movements of the throw so that when an athlete makes the correct joint angles, the system plays the appropriate sounds.
Farrow says the researchers are tracking the kinematic data over time to create player profiles. “We can look at how to improve [a player’s] skills and also analyze the influence of other performance factors, like fatigue,” he says.
“The basic premise of providing biofeedback certainly has its merit in performance,” says Scott McLean, an assistant professor of kinesiology at Southwestern University in Georgetown, TX. “And the technology is small and unobtrusive enough to be built into any garment,” says McLean.
Farrow says the technology could be developed into a whole bodysuit. Indeed, Helmer would like to use it on a pair of running shorts.
The researchers have tested the sleeve on six netball players and are also working with a handful of athletes at AIS. Helmer says they would like to eventually commercialize the technology, but first need to do more testing.
Smaller design teams can now prototype and deploy faster.