Scientists are developing a range of miniaturised wearable and track-side sensors, computer modelling tools and smart training devices to help British athletes improve their performance on the world stage, as part of a new 8.5 million project that will be officially launched tomorrow (28 October 2009).
The Elite Sport Performance Research in Training with Pervasive Sensing (ESPRIT) project is funded by the EPSRC and is led by Imperial College London in partnership with UK Sport and supported by Queen Mary University of London and Loughborough University. It involves researchers from the three universities working alongside British athletes via UK Sport's Research and Innovation programme.
The researchers are devising miniature wearable sensors that will monitor different aspects of athletes' physiological performance, in order to monitor and optimise training for competitive performance. The sensors will include wireless wearable nodes to measure biochemical information, heart rate, EEG, ECG, muscle activity, joint speed and contact forces. Athletes will be able to use this information to understand how they are progressing and developing with their training.
The team is also developing small track-side sensors, for detailed monitoring of an athlete's body movements and location, and of interactions between a team during training.
Sports scientists can currently monitor athletes' performance through controlled experiments in a laboratory setting or, increasingly, via commercially available technologies that can be used in the 'field'. However, the devices used for this are often large and either not suitable for use in the field, or able to measure only one aspect of an athlete's or team's performance. Consequently, the data collected is not realistic enough for sports scientists and coaches to understand how athletes are performing in a training or competition environment.
The new wireless 'pervasive' sensi
|Contact: Colin Smith|
Imperial College London