SAN JOSE, Calif.--With sensors becoming ever smaller and less expensive, full-body motion-tracking systems are becoming increasingly available, demystifying sporting success and putting computer measurable science into physical training.
Indeed, measuring human motion in 3D using MEMS sensors is becoming ever more important in modern sports, with coaches, parents and athletes themselves pushing for more qualitative and quantitative data about winning movements and individual technique.
At a recent MEMS in Sports panel discussion – part of a Sensors in Design session-- at DESIGN West in San Jose, athletes and engineers came together to discuss how less expensive accelerometers, gyroscopes, and microphones were revolutionizing exercise, not just for Olympic competitors, but for weekend warriors and fitness buffs alike.
Per Slycke, chief technology officer and founder of Xsens, a 3D motion tracking firm, said the effects of pairing GPS tracking with a full sensor-laden biomechanical body suit for sports like snowboarding, allowed for “extremely accurate insight,” not just into the boarder’s movement, but also into their location on the mountain and distance traveled.
“The kind of picture you can piece together from combining the data from a 3D accelerometer, gyroscope, processor, RF antenna, battery and biometric sensor is really amazing,” said Slycke, showing off a plethora of videos like the one below to illustrate his point.
Pretty cool pics @karenlightman!...we are thinking about organizing MEMs panel at emerging technologies conference in July in Vancouver (www.cmoset.com), if anyone is interested pls contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
the MEMS in Sports panel at Sensors in Design was one of the most funnest (yes I wrote that) panels I've moderated; you should check out our pictures from the panel - including me standing next to the surfboard: http://www.flickr.com/photos/50603106@N08/
thank you @docdivakar, you might be right higher volumes will mean lower prices and these devices will become more affordable for the masses...whether the masses will go for it that is another story, my wife bought me a high tech hear monitor which is complicated that only used it once or twice ;-)...my gym training has not improved! Kris
Kris, sports getting expensive... that has been going on for years now. What you will see more are the devices doing multiple sensing functions at a low cost that will increase the affordability of these gadgets from all geographies, developed/developing.
What you will also see with the proliferation of sensors is the popularity of new academic disciplines like Kinesiology that draw from engineering, science, math and biology. So get ready to offer new PhD programs!
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.