menu

How Will Athletes Use Advanced Technologies To Win Gold In London?

How Will Athletes Use Advanced Technologies To Win Gold In London?
technology

In an article brought to you with the help of Intel, PSFK looks at how even though Olympians are the world's most physically gifted athletes, some may have an advantage by training with innovative gadgets and programs.

Allie Walker
  • 28 july 2012

The 2012 London Olympics are poised to be the most tech-forward Summer Olympic games. During the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, 108 world records were set–until those games, only an average of 22 records had been broken at Olympic games. Why the massive increase in Beijing? Advances in technology. In the four years since Beijing, the world has seen even greater innovations in this sector– in 2008, Facebook and Twitter were still in their infancy, the iPhone was in its first generation, and being able to make a payment through NFC technology was just a dream.

How will the current advances in technology give Olympic hopefuls an edge in the competition? From specially designed, golf-ball inspired track suits that promise to shave 0.023 seconds off a sprinter’s 100m time to cycling bikes with the least possible drag that increase the possibility of reducing mile splits by 1.6 seconds, athletes are better equipped than ever to win gold.

Some athletes are further embracing technology, using sensors and chips to help them analyze their performance, guaranteeing their movements are as efficient as possible- and therefore hopefully increase their chance for winning Olympic gold.

British gymnast Mimi Cesar has perfected her rhythmic floor routine using MotivePro, a vibrating suit that uses a modular system of sensors on her body to track and record her movements. The sensors give her real-time feedback as to where her body is in space, and vibrate when her arms, legs, head, chest, or feet go outside a desired range of motion. Because the feedback is instantaneous, Mimi can correct and refine her position while doing her routine. The suit can also give her audio cues as to when she’s out of alignment, and after she’s finished her routine, she can play back her performance to see visual cues to help make it perfect. According to MotivePro:

The system can also record the movements as well, to use after the event. This means that archives can be built up showing relative performance over time, any long term trajectories identified and the use of the data to make averages amongst particular user groups.

Watch a video of Mimi demonstrate MotivePro below:

Lolo Jones, an American hurdler, is also using motion-detecting sensors to optimize her form in her quest to win gold in the 100m hurdle event. Unlike Mimi, who has several minutes to complete her event, Lolo’s event will be over in roughly 12 seconds- every fraction of a second could mean the difference between placing at the Olympics or falling short. To improve her performance and to drop her average time, Lolo tracks every second of her performance using a 40 Vicon T40S motion-capture cameras that record 2,000 frames per second. The cameras capture the 39 reflective motion detection sensors Lolo wears on her body, allowing her and her team to analyze her every movement down to millimeters.

With the help of the system, Lolo has been able to identify a potential problem area- her left leg. In her first 8 steps, Lolo’s left leg wasn’t accelerating at the same rate as her right leg, costing her 0.01 seconds for every step she took. Although 0.01 seconds per step doesn’t sound like much, consider this- the difference between the current world record in the 100m hurdles- 12.21 seconds- is only 8 hundredths of a second away from Lolo’s personal best- 12.29 seconds (set at the 2008 Olympic trials). With the motion-capture technology, can Lolo beat her own personal best to set a new world record in London?

Watch a video of Lolo using the motion-capture sensors:

Mimi and Lolo, as well as many other of the 10,500 athletes competing at the London 2012 games, are using advanced technology to improve their chances of winning. Can these innovations help hopeful Olympians win gold, and will those who didn’t employ technology to guide their training be at a disadvantage? Our eyes will be on gold medal winners and world record breakers– if more than 108 world records are shattered at this year’s games, (the high set in Beijing) it could serve as a definitive answer that technology does make a difference between just being an Olympian and being a medal-winning Olympian.

London 2012

intel, always on, always on intel, intel always on, intel content program, intel social media, social chorus, social content, social media, halogen, halogen media, halogen media group, chorus, psfk

With support from our partner, Intel, we’re exploring how innovations in technology are re-shaping the world of sport. Intel is committed to improving our lives with fast, light, wireless (and stylish!) technology. Their goal is to develop tools that help us create amazing things. And we think that’s amazing. Follow the conversation on Twitter with #intelalwayson.

 

technology
Trending

Gilt's Pop-Up House Is The Kind Of Store You'll Want To Live In

Retail
Op-Ed Today

The Future Of The American Workforce Requires Unbundling College Education

President of JetBlue Technology Ventures: developing corporate education programs for non-traditional students

Advertising Today

The Hottest Chip In The World Comes Packed In A Coffin-Shaped Box

The individually wrapped snack is made from the spiciest known chili

Trending

Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Mobile Today

Registering To Vote Is Now Just A Text Away

A new bot aims to mobilize underrepresented groups this election season through SMS and Facebook Messenger

Related Expert

Kristina Dryža

Australian & International Consumer Trends Expert

Luxury Today

Shoe Repair Has Moved Onto Your Phone

Cobbler Concierge is an on-demand service to get your footwear fixed online

Work Today

Microsoft Wants To Help Workers Better Communicate With Their Coworkers

Project Sonoma is a new app designed to help employees chat and coordinate shifts with their associates

Advertising Today

Real-Time Data Used To Calculate The Brand Power Of Athletes

Brandtix has develope a digital platform with a complex algorithm that combines social media variables with player performance to predict the next A-list pros

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry
NEW

PSFK Op-Ed Yesterday

Digital Design Expert: Mobile First Is Dead, Think Mobile Native

Brian Cooper, chief creative officer of OLIVER Group UK, explains how some brands are still playing catch-up to new technology

PSFK Labs Yesterday

The 10 Steps To Discover, Hire, Develop Your Next Leader

PSFK's Future of Work report outlines key steps in the employee development path to empower next-gen leaders

Automotive Yesterday

Toyota Is Using Sewage To Power Its New Electric Car

A new hydrogen-fueled vehicle is driven by what we flush away

Culture Yesterday

Catch A Concert On This Small Floating Island

A man-made archipelago in Italy is hosting music and art performances

Design & Architecture Yesterday

DIY Kit Lets You Build Your Own Wooden Bike, Boat Or Caravan

Woodenwidget says its detailed guides are suitable for beginners and experienced woodworkers alike

Social Media Yesterday

The United Nations Has Launched Its Own Social Media Platform

A new app aims to get younger audiences more involved in sustainable development goals

Design Yesterday

Crash-Friendly Drone Made From LEGOs Is Completely Rebuildable

The clever device offers games, education and the uniquely rewarding experience of destroying your high-flying airship

PSFK LABS REPORT

Future Of Work
Cultivating The Next Generation Of Leaders
NEW

Fitness / Sport Yesterday

Free Sneakers Given Out To Motivated Marathon Runners

Strava will give the shoes to athletes who run the second half of their race faster than the first

Culture Yesterday

Someone Invented A Robot Just To Serve Trays Of Beef Jerky

Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz, in partnership with Chef's Cut Real Jerky, creates an automated snack delivery system

Millennials Yesterday

Why A Social Networking Site Decided To Rebrand

Meetup, a platform that connects like-minded individuals, has taken steps to stay relevant amongst millennials

No search results found.