Technology Helps Athletes With Injury Prevention


Courtasy of Wiki-commons An Anti-gravity treadmill that helps runners use in order to come back from injuries

Molly Kennedy, Sports Editor

Technology has become an intricate part of almost every aspect of the 21st Century including sports. Injuries can easily end an athlete’s career or set them back for many seasons. Due to the introduction of technology in sports, athletes can prevent injuries more easily or come back from injuries faster.  Athletes are able to maximize their skills and elongate their careers with technology. 

Injuries happen all the time in all sports, and over many years injury prevention and recovery have changed drastically. In order to be the best team or player, an athlete now is able to use technology in order to understand how to optimize efficiency.

In the MLB, Bat motion sensors made by Zepp Baseball let players improve their swing using a precision device inside the bat. Data lets coaches and players analyze personal body mechanics, improving performance, or adjusting techniques to avoid injury or reduce effort. According to the New York Times, a rookie could expect to play 4.3 years in what the authors call the Early Era, between 1902 and 1945, 6.47 years in the Golden Age (1946-68) and 6.85 years in the Modern Era. The study does not include players whose careers began later than in 1993, because many are still playing. There has been such a drastic change because of many factors, however one of the main ones being better sports training and medicine.

In addition to professional baseball, runners had been able to extend their athletic careers. Running involves a lot of impact on the body and can cause injuries easily. The Anti-Gravity Treadmill was originally made in the 1990s for astronauts that have to exercise for hours each day to combat the loss of bone mass and muscle in microgravity. Later in 2005, it was remade in order for patients to recover from leg and foot injuries and take the weight off during rehab. The treadmill can make you feel up to 80% lighter which allows runners to put less stress on their injuries while still exercising. 

Electronic Performance and Tracking System (EPTS) is used by many athletes to track their progress through the season. ESTS trackers are sewn into athletic uniforms and feed back real-time information on an athlete’s player’s balance, speed, acceleration, and motion. Many NFL, professional soccer players, and MLB teams use the trackers in order to prevent injury through their season and increase their recovery rate. There are many aspects it is able to track, but it also can help players become more competitive because they learn what is more efficient. Impact monitor stickers attached to player’s bodies alert coaches and trainers to otherwise invisible signs of a potential concussion, brain trauma, over-exertion, or injured muscles, tendons, and ligaments.

Technology has served as a tool for many teams and players but the question that is often raised is whether technological advancements that lead to performance enhancement can become unethical. World records in running events such as the marathon are being smashed due to the new technology used in shoes. Technology has been advancing for years, and it raises the question, are athletes breaking records because they’re working harder or because of the technology?