i3 - January/February 2018 - 108

Business

By Bobby Baumler

BY T H E N U M B E RS

Sports Tech Improves Health,
Safety and Performance

 F 

itness technology has been a focus of CES since the dedicated Marketplace in 2011 where the now ubiquitous
fitness activity band emerged as the first wearable products
designed for athletes and health conscious consumers. Fast-forward
to CES 2018 and new technologies are improving the health,
performance and safety of athletes regardless of ages or ability.
Advancements like sensor-embedded
clothing, concussive impact detection
devices and fitness coaching platforms
continue to drive the growth of the
health and fitness tech market. CTA
estimates that shipments of health
and fitness devices increased by 30 percent in 2017 to more than seven million
units. The popularity of fitness technology is also reflected in data provided by the National Sporting Goods
Association, which estimates that
sporting electronics account for nearly
a quarter of the $68 billion spent on
sporting goods in the U.S. each year.
Fitness trackers represented the
first break-out product for the sports and
fitness technology market. More importantly, the popularity of fitness bands has
increased awareness for the importance
of daily physical activity. According to
the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
nearly four in ten U.S. adults suffer
from obesity, increasing the risk of developing heart disease, stroke, and type 2
diabetes. With more than 26 million
fitness activity bands shipped in 2017,
an expanding number of consumers
are empowered to increase their daily

physical activity in the hopes of improving personal health, reducing obesity and
lowering healthcare costs.

Sports Safety

In sports, recent advancements in fitness technology seek to improve player
safety by reducing the severity and occurrence of injury. Perhaps the most significant risk for children playing high impact
sports including football, hockey, lacrosse,
snowboarding and soccer is a concussion
or traumatic brain injury (TBI). The CDC
estimates 329,000 children are treated
annually for sports related injuries that
include a diagnosis of a concussion or
TBI. A wave of new concussive detection
devices like i1 Biometrics's Shockbox,
Jolt Athletic's Jolt and Riddell's Insite
use sensors to monitor player activity

from the sidelines and immediately alert
coaches and athletic trainers to potentially
serious impacts in order to protect players.
Beyond health and safety, personalized
fitness is now a reality with the incorporation of sensor-embedded clothing, virtual
reality and artificial intelligence technology.
CES exhibitors like Sensoria have developed a platform integrating smart clothing
to provide real-time activity monitoring
that integrates with a user's smartphone
to provide customized coaching advice.
Similarly, for athletes interested in improving their throwing accuracy, Wilson's X
football can measure distance, spin rate
velocity and spiral efficiency. For athletes
looking for an unconventional immersive
full-body workout, platforms like the soonto-be released Black Box VR incorporates
a virtual reality headset and deploys artificial intelligence for a customized and
progressively intense workout regimen.
Advancements including artificial
intelligence and smart textiles provide
a glimpse into the future direction of
sports and fitness technology and the
potential to further improve the safety
and performance of athletes. ■

The Wilson X
football can
measure distance,
spin rate velocity
and spiral efficiency.

HEALTH STATS: CDC AND CTA SALES & FORECAST

38%

Percentage
of U.S. adults
considered
obese according
to the CDC

$

5.5BILLION 26.5 MILLION 30%

2017 shipment
revenue from
health and fitness
technology

SOURCES: CDC and CTA Sales & Forecast Report (7/2017).

108

JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018

Number of
fitness activity
bands shipped
in 2017

increase in
health and
fitness device
shipments
in 2017

2018

See the latest in Health & Wellness, Wearables,
Fitness Technology and the new CES Sports Zone
presented by Turner Sports at Tech West in the
Sands Expo at CES 2018.
I T I S I N N O VAT I O N



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - January/February 2018

Contents
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