Wednesday, February 8, 2023

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Sports wearable technology takes Lacrosse to the future

The Story of Conor Gately:

Former Marquette lacrosse player Conor Gately was known for working extra apart from the scheduled practices. While that helped him break records and earned him a place on the Tewaaraton watch list, it turned out to be too much player load especially on game day. Coaches were able to find this by using PLAYERTEK by Catapult which is a wearable GPS monitoring system which was launched in 2006. Even though the extra work helped him become a better player but on game day it used to lead to fatigue and burn out by the third or fourth quarter.

After realizing this, coaches were able to tailor his work out and come up with a more efficient solution.

Growing trend of Wearables in Lacrose:

MLL’s New York Lizards identified wearable tech as the top workout trend of 2018.The Golden Eagles coaches have been using this technology for quite a while now and while it may not have helped them win or lose , the data has definitely helped them. Other teams including Twelve Division I men’s and women’s programs, one professional team, the NLL’s Rochester Knighthawks, and one high school, St. Xavier (Ohio), are also using PLAYERTEK.

A recent study by Gordon and Rushford discovered the in-game load for Sprong’s team varied from 3,000-6,000 yards (about 3.5 miles) depending on position and sometimes more than 10,000 yards (about 5.5 miles) in practice. They found that high intensity practices would yield better results if they were spaced periodically to avoid burn out in spring.

Many coaches are now falling behind the idea of using wearables to track the fitness of their players. The data that proves that players may be getting tired has helped a great deal in preventing burn outs and improving general fitness and form of the players. The players are also interested in gaining and analyzing such data to improve their game.

Current Wearable technology in the market:

Other wearables makeing their mark in the market, include G-Vert which is an intensity tracker that measures kinetic energy, jump analytics, power, stress percentage and appendage asymmetry. Others like the FitBit, track activity, diet and sleep. Under Armour has also developed HOVR shoes, which have an embedded chip in the sole and are linked to mobile apps like MapMyRun.

Anoosha Iqbal
A medic-in-making by day, an enthusiast for crazy side projects by night.

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