According to Matt Davies Stockton, any kind of sport is a celebration of the human spirit, skills, perseverance, and hard work. It has been a source of entertainment for thousands of years. However, since the past century, technology has had a major role in professional sports. Let’s check out how technology affects professional sports.
1. High-definition broadcasting over multiple platforms – Play a recording of an NFL game just two decades ago and compare it to any football game from the latest season. The former looks so dated that those who weren’t old enough to experience such broadcasts during that time may think that it’s at least half a century-old footage. Modern ultra-high-definition cameras allow you to even spot an imperfect blade of grass on the turf and zoom in on every delicate movement of the players in the most intense sport.
Apart from the resolution and fidelity of the captured footage, the options to broadcast the game have also risen dramatically due to increased and more advanced networking infrastructure. From broadcasting the game live on cable and streaming platforms on large TV screens to showing it live on portable devices like laptops, mobiles, and more irrespective of where you are on the planet. Even if you are halfway across the world, as long as you have a decent internet connection, you can buy a league pass and watch every game live.
2. More accurate data collection and performance analysis – During the 2023 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, a lot of viewers were astonished to see the balls being charged during the game. That’s because the newest soccer balls have sensors inside them that could accurately detect the most subtle movements at 50 frames per second and ultra-wideband sensors that provide extremely precise positional data.
The new stadiums also had 12 cameras mounted under the roof just for tracking the ball and the players for their accurate positions. These new technologies almost automated offside calls made performance monitoring easier and made the game fairer. Similar high-end tech is being adopted in professional sports across the globe.
3. Sportswear – Even the sportswear worn by athletes has been improved drastically with the help of technology. With loads of innovation in synthetic fabrics, athletes can be comfortable even in sweltering heat and focus on the game. Sportswear has become lighter, more adaptable, breathable, and humidity resistant.
Modern sportswear in high-intensity sports has also increased protection for athletes. For instance, knee-high hockey socks made from optic fiber provide players with a protective shield against high-speed hockey balls that threaten to leave a nasty injury. Swimsuits have also been drastically improved for better hydrodynamics and for reducing drag.
Matt Davies Stockton suggests that you don’t shy away from the use of technology in your favorite sports since it only makes the game better, safer, fairer, and accessible in the long run. The only time technology may be detrimental to professional sports is if it takes away candid human skills and hard work from the game.