Welcome to the second edition of #top5sportstechnews for 2019! Just to clarify, some of the news or developments may not have happened exactly in the last month. But it happened to have come under our radar in the last month and among them, we picked these five to be the most innovative or exciting. There were some interesting news/developments for those who are into running and cycling. We also have one about a not so commonly mentioned sport – squash! So here’s our top 5 sports tech news for Feb.
Asics’ latest innovation in efficient running
Running shoes are perhaps one of the most bought sports products. Just look at the statistics. It is not uncommon for runners to have 2 pairs of running shoes or more. Other than design, comfort and aesthetics, many shoe companies have looked into designs and materials that reduce impact or return energy to runners. Nike, adidas, Reebok and On running are a few companies that have done that. Now, Asics has recently come up with their own design to reduce energy loss at the ankle and ultimately improve the runner’s efficiency. There are a few pieces to this design: the combination of its FlyteFoam and Gel technologies, with the new GuideSole technology (an innovative rocker sole design), and a unique construction that moves the shoe’s centre of mass toward the rear foot which makes each stride quicker and easier. Read more about their new tech on their website or here: Asics launches new technology in efficiency-focused running sneaker.
Nubike – a new bike design without chains
The good old 2 wheels, pedals and chain design of the bicycle is something that gets challenged time and again. There is this “yes it’s good but it could be better” type of mentality that brings out interesting innovations. The Nubike is one that we found recently. It replaced the chain and sprockets at the rear wheel with levers and a circular cam. With that design, instead of pedalling in a circular way, the rider pedals in a sort of linear way. You could say its more like stepping than pedalling. The inventor claims there is less flex on the rider’s hips, knees and ankles and just overall less stress to a rider’s body. At the same time, the lever design generates twice the power and torque which sounds very impressive. There are also other benefits of the bike design including no more chain maintenance and an easier way to dismantle and transport the bike. Have a look at the video below that talks more about their design or read more in this article: Eye-catching NuBike goes with drive levers instead of a chain.
The Peloton Tread(mill)
Peloton started off with a connected stationary bike. It brings a live (or in-demand) spin class to the comfort of the user’s home so you never feel secluded or unmotivated when you train. They have now brought that same concept onto a new treadmill product they call Tread. Similar to the bike, the treadmill comes with a decent sized HD touchscreen at the front so that you can select your preferred workout. The system is Bluetooth and ANT+ enabled so it works with a range of heart rate monitors. Other than cardio (running), Tread users also can pick strength workouts and they include exercises that require dumbbells or resistance bands or simply using your own bodyweight. Overall, the design looks nice and sleek, and Peloton developed a shock absorbing system that reduces impact for runners. Read more about it in this review: Can the Peloton Tread Disrupt The Treadmill Market?.
Leomo Live Video Sync
Leomo is a wearable motion sensor system that was developed to help competitive cyclists (and their coaches) better understand their movements while riding. It consists of five wearable IMUs and a handle-bar mounted head unit. The five wearable sensors are supposed to be worn on each shoe, above each knee and above the sacrum. Recently, they have added live video syncing to the motion sensor capture. Coaches can now use Leomo’s Smartphone/iPad app to record the workout of an athlete while collecting data from the sensors and then do a video playback to provide clearer feedback. Also, this new LVS system is not restricted to cycling and can be used in other sports; especially ones that have a focus on technique and precise movements. Learn more about how it can be used with a marathon runner in the video below or read more in their press release: LEOMO UNVEILS THE NEXT LEVEL OF MOTION CAPTURE TOOL IN COMPETITIVE SPORTS.
Interactive technology used in World Squash Championships
Squash has not been very popular compared to other racket sports for many different reasons. In short, accessibility, publicity and interactivity of the game are a few of the reasons, and they all create a vicious cycle that is difficult to break. But a company called Interactive Squash is trying to change all that. They have developed technology to make squash interactive and engaging to watch and play. Installing cameras, sensors and a projector in a squash court, they are able to track key metrics of the players and shots and display them at the end of each game. So they did just that at the recent World Squash Championships and also added a lot of other fun effects during warm-ups and interactive games for the audience during breaks. Kudos to the team at Interactive Squash for trying to promote the sport through technology and gamification. Read more about what happened at the PSA World Championshps: Squash in the lead of innovation in the sport at PSA CHI 2019. Or check out their video below to get a better idea of what it does.
And that is our top five sports tech news for Feb 2019. If you would like more information about any of the above, feel free to contact us or leave a comment below. If you like what you read, do subscribe to our blog/newsletter here: link. With that, thanks for reading!