It should come as no big surprise to anyone that a highly technical sport like motor racing has seen huge advances in technology in recent years.
But more unexpected is the impact the digital age has had on games like soccer and basketball. It touches on many areas, from statistical analysis of the game to identifying the strengths and weaknesses of individual athletes and addressing the latter in a logical and scientific manner.
Some technologies may take away the pristine nature of some sports, but for most people, technology has enhanced our enjoyment and increased our knowledge.
This has proven to help us not only watch the game with a more informed eye, but also understand the inside and outside of the game. NBA betting spreadThis is because the more we know about competing teams in the game, the better we can determine what represents value and what does not.
Here, in no particular order, are five ways technology is improving the NBA for fans and players.
Arguably the most important development in how we analyze basketball is the introduction of SportVU. Every player, every game his official, and even the ball always have their position on the court plotted throughout the game. The software updates the visual information he receives 25 times a second, so the database receives about a million different pieces of information from every game.
Not only does this generate a veritable avalanche of stats available to fans, NBA databaseis also invaluable to the coach.
Now you can see exactly how your players performed and analyze their effectiveness in specific gameplay. The result is fact-based decisions for the benefit of the entire team moving forward.
player body sensor
As in most professional sports, all NBA players carry body sensors to monitor various aspects of their on-court performance. It is light and unobtrusive when worn on a player’s vest, and can generate an enormous amount of information.
At its most basic level, sensors can measure the distance a player travels while on the court. It can also record metabolic data such as heart rate, calories burned, and workload.
This has many implications both from a performance analysis and optimization perspective. Careful monitoring of players can also help them rehabilitate when they return from injury, and hopefully even prevent injuries from occurring.
Other areas that can be enhanced include improving the nutrition and training needs of players, and increasing their overall fitness level.
virtual reality and augmented reality
Today there are few fields that have not started to benefit from virtual reality. From airline pilot training to more engaging education, just put on your headset and recreate the real world.
Some teams are more enthusiastic about adopting this technology than others, with the Washington Wizards leading the way.
A practical example of this was in the special training the team’s reserve center Ian Mahinmi received to hone his free-throw shooting ability. From a success rate of around 60% before training, in his one of his warm-ups in his game last year in the Wizards’ preseason, he upped it to a very impressive 87%.
mobile gadgets, devices and apps
Look across the team bench at an NBA game today and you’ll see many coaching staff scrutinizing the action taking place around their tablets and smartphones.
As well as providing a live stream of game information, it is often performed before strategies and moves are actually executed.
One particularly useful app that nearly every team uses today is Coaches Eye. Available on all major operating systems, record and replay actions to analyze and compare movements. Its slow-motion playback feature is very often used when coaches believe there may be a fundamental flaw in the way a particular move is performed.
there may be many opponentsthe consensus opinion is that social media has contributed tremendously to sports, including basketball.
This direct connection provided between fans, teams and players only increases engagement. Fans tweeting live during the game creates the perfect viral environment to engage followers and get more people into the sport.
Including links to action clips, player interviews, and more can be the NBA’s most powerful marketing tool yet.
So technology is definitely what it is to stay in the NBA. And basketball is definitely better for technology.