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Wearable Technology: The Future of Sports Performance

By: Nick Tilson

Technology continues to find a way to integrate itself into our daily lives. In 2007 we were introduced to the original iPhone. Not even 15 years later we just heard the first sounds from Mars. It’s safe to say technology will continue to evolve and further become part of our lives. Elite-level athletes are no exception. Professional sports teams and players are setting new records every season as performance is at an all-time high. The emergence of wearable technology over the past five years has provided teams and players with invaluable information to optimize recovery and performance.

From the average person to elite-level athletes, wearable technology has grown exponentially since 2015. According to Grand View Research, the wearable technology market is projected have a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.9% from 2020 to 2027. The projected growth is attributed to rising health concerns and the ability for wearable technology to monitor health concerns such as heart rate and irregular rhythm.

As wearable technology has evolved, companies such as Zepp, Whoop, and Catapult have created products to improve the performance of athletes. Zepp creates products for baseball, golf, tennis, softball, and soccer. Their products are worn by the athletes and seamlessly communicate information to an app in which coaches and players can analyze their performance. Whoop created wearable technology that monitors sleep, measures recovery, and builds strain. Catapult's products aim to improve the performance of athletes and teams of all levels. Catapult offers video analysis and wearable technology focused on athlete management.

Professional athletes across several sports have spoken out about how wearable technology has improved their performance. Whoop has had some of the highest praise. Super Bowl Champion and MVP Patrick Mahomes said “I’ve had my Whoop for months and I love it. Whoop has helped me under my own training and health in a new way”.

According to Whoop, athletes that use their products see a reduced resting heart rate, fewer injuries, better sleep, lower alcohol consumption, and smoother travel. Catapult products allow their users to optimize performance, reduce the risk of injury, objectively manage the rehabilitation process allowing athletes to return to play sooner.

Wearing technology has become a daily routine for elite-level athletes and teams. As technology continues to improve exponentially, wearable technology is bound to improve and adapt to fit to the lifestyles of athletes. Is wearable technology the future of sports performance and analysis? Only time will tell, but for now, wearable technology is here to stay.

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