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Advanced technologies aim to transform the coaching of top athletes
Date:9/13/2007

Groundbreaking research now under way in the UK could help our leading athletics coaches deliver outstanding results in the years ahead.

The SESAME (Sensing for Sport and Managed Exercise) project is developing innovative video and body sensor technologies designed to aid the training of both novice and elite athletes. The aim is to combine these technologies into a unique, integrated computer system that substantially increases the quantity and variety of data available to coaches during training sessions.

The project, which is being funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), will be described at this years BA Festival of Science in York. SESAME has the potential to significantly improve future UK medal prospects in events such as sprinting, long jump and pole vault, for example.

Many sports depend on correct technique to optimise athlete performance and reduce injury risk, says Dr Robert Harle of the University of Cambridge, who will deliver the presentation on 13th September. So theres significant value in developing technologies which can assist the coaching process by providing near-instantaneous feedback on an athletes technique during a training session itself.

The naked eye has long been the tool of choice for athletics coaches, perhaps supplemented by a single fixed video camera producing pictures of limited value. These video limitations arise because the coach has to use the camera either to provide useful close-up pictures of a running athlete but which only cover one or two strides, or to generate longer-range shots which show more strides but make it harder to see the athletes technique in the necessary detail.

SESAME is therefore developing a leading-edge data recording and analysis system that will greatly increase the amount of useful information available to a coach. The system will produce simultaneous shots from multiple video cameras located in di
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Contact: Beverly Silk
pressoffice@epsrc.ac.uk
01-793-444-404
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Source:Eurekalert

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