October 17, 2007 It’s not exactly new technology, but the human body is still the most impressive piece of hardware on the planet - and when it attains spectacular new milestones like this one, we see it as worthy of our readers attention. Alexander and Thomas Huber have set a new speed-climbing record on the Nose of El Capitan – scaling the famous rock face in Yosemite National Park in a time of 2hr 45min 45sec. Read More
September 14, 2007 Real-time athlete monitoring is now firmly entrenched as an essential tool for elite athletes, with a growing array of sports monitoring systems available for both top-level sportspeople and your average fitness fanatic. This new body sensor currently under development at Imperial College promises a new level of usability by virtue of its form – the cufflink sized device clips behind the ear so as not to impede performance and delivers extensive metrics on posture, stride length, step frequency, acceleration and the body's response to shock waves. Read More
September 12, 2007 New Zealand’s famous All Blacks rugby team are about to miss out on a significant Kiwi advance in sports clothing technology that their Australian, South African, Irish and Scottish teams will bring to the World Cup. The All Blacks’ Adidas sponsorship will prevent them from using the revolutionary new IonX sportswear from Canterbury - a smart fabric that uses ionic energy to maximize blood flow, cool and calm the wearer, and deliver measurable performance gains in power output and recovery times. Read More
August 7, 2007 Australian company iCool Sport has rolled out the “secret weapon” first developed for use at the 2004 Olympics in Athens – and unlike the secret weapons employed by some less scrupulous athletes, it’s both healthy and legal. The iCool Plunge Pool is a miniature, portable bath that can chill water to a specified degree without the inefficiency and uncertainty of involving the use of ice. The newest design is based on feedback from hundreds of elite athletes and specialists who have been using the original pools in research trials since 2003 and is now available to any coach or fitness enthusiast. Read More
July 24, 2007 The idea of attaching fish-like fins to the body to propel us more efficiently through the water occurred to many early inventors, including Leonardo da Vinci, but it wasn’t until the early 1940s that flippers came into actual use – in this case, for the US Navy’s underwater demolition teams. Since then, they’ve become popular around the world for skin diving, snorkeling and swimming training. Look at the tails of fast fish, however, and you’ll notice that none of them sport a flat-edged tail – and it’s this observation that has driven Italian swim fin specialists Salvas to develop a new asymmetric fin design to get maximal kicking power out of a swimmer while promoting a more natural kicking motion than many standard fins. Read More
July 15, 2007 As this year's Tour de France hits the brutal climbs of the French Alps, cycling computer specialist Polar has announced the release its latest electronic monitoring systems which were developed using feedback from pro cycling teams during the 2006 tour. The flagship CS600 model is designed to provide in-depth metrics “out of the box”, including power output, left/right pedaling distribution, heart rate data, caloric expenditure and a new cycling efficiency reading that calculates the forward momentum of the bike in relation to the cyclists energy output. Read More
July 14, 2007 Built specficially for the Pan-American games, which started in Rio de Janeiro yesterday is this very special electric Volvo C30. The 1:5 scale model was developed to transport javelins, hammers or discuses from the pitch back to the athletes in the throwing area. Volvo hand-fabricated the unique bodyshell for the 2hp radio controlled electric car and the chassis came from Nordic Sport. The little beastie can reach 20km/h carrying its maximum payload which equates to four discuses, three javelins or two hammers. It keeps people safe, and it works a treat. Read More
July 11, 2007 From elite sportspeople to industrial workers and emergency services personnel, avoiding heat stress is critical to performance, productivity and in some cases, even staying alive. A air conditioner that follows you around sounds like a great idea if not a particularly practical one - so why not build one into your clothing? This is the concept behind this innovative cooling vest which uses two battery powered ventilation units concealed in its side pockets to circulate air through a permeable three-dimensional, pressure-resistant fabric at a rate of up to 550 litres (19.4 cubic ft) per minute. The result is a system that increases evaporation and keeps the user cool by supporting the natural thermo regulation system of the body. Read More
June 30, 2007 Forbes magazine released its annual Celebrity 100 list recently, noting that golfer Tiger Woods banked US$100 million in the last year, becoming the first athlete in history to do so. Woods is the perfect corporate ambassador, being handsome, charming, beautifully spoken, dominant in a major TV sport and black, giving him a commercial edge in that his sponsors are perceived to be inclusive of minorities. SportBusiness International Magazine once forecast that Woods could be the first athlete to earn a billion dollars in a year given he had all the boxes ticked and global TV sport was emerging as a gargantuan money spinner given that it’s the only time-critical news you can pre-sell. Remarkably, a new sports star has rocketed from obscurity who will almost certainly push his way onto next year’s Celebrity 100 and might well elbow his way past Woods as sport’s highest money earner in the next round of sponsorship negotiations. Unknown three months ago, Lewis Hamilton’s sporting career has begun more spectacularly than any other in history … in any sport. Read More
June 8, 2007 There was once a time when Woods were actually made of wood and hickory shafts were at the cutting-edge of golfing technology, no-one had ever heard of carbon-fiber, titanium drivers or hybrid irons, and many would argue that the game was no worse off for it. With the rapid acceleration in development of golfing equipment over the last two decades has come the need to ban certain equipment that provides too great an advantage to the user. Serious business in the multi-million dollar world of professional golf, but for the average hack looking to get one up on their friends during a weekend social game, the legality of the equipment doesn't have quite the same bearing - in fact it almost seems to have become a selling point for some equipment manufacturers. Read More