The Future Technology of Sport
Technological innovation is a major driving force behind change in any industry, especially sport. Technology is helping to build better sportsmen and women while keeping athletes safer in the field and enhancing the fan experience to improve decision-making and entertainment value.
From drone referee assistants to steerable tennis rackets linked to tennis balls and remote medical monitoring of horses in a race, Coral has worked with leading Futurologist Dr. Ian Pearson to reveal the technologies that will become a sporting reality in the not too distant future.
Please note all below information is a prediction only, based on research and experience from professional Futurologist Dr. Ian Pearson and may/may not become a reality – only time will tell!
Enter your age below to find out which sporting technologies you can expect to experience as an athlete or fan in the years to come. Some will be here sooner than you think…
Football, 2022 – Drone AI Referee Assistants
Drone AI assistants will be supporting referees pitch-side to get video clippings from any angle, and they will link directly to what a referee is looking at during the game.
F1, 2025 – TRACK-POWERED ELECTRIC F1
As another approach to the existing Formula E racing movement, new electric cars will see the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo driving cars powered by the track itself. These new vehicles won’t have to carry all their energy around in battery packs, and the track-powering tech will allow them to share power between cars. Inductive loops in the track will transfer energy to capacitor banks as the car passes over, powering them to the finish line. Furthermore, these electric cars will reduce weight issues F1 drivers have faced with their current cars.
Rugby 2025 – Shock-absorbing Rugby Gear To Prevent Injury
Military development of smart fabrics is progressing quickly, and some of the ceramic mixes can provide high levels of protection to the skin. Using these advancements and applying them to rugby, we can expect protective gear to absorb the force from potentially dangerous collisions between players that might cause a broken bone or head injury.
Horse racing 2030 – Remote medical monitoring of horses
Remote medical monitoring of horses will be in place for horse racing events. Data will be relayed in real-time to track authorities or the vet in charge so that they could instruct riders to slow down if they believe a horse is being overworked.
All sports, 2032 – Active Skin Feedback To Optimise Training
Active skin can record and replay sensations, thanks to having tiny electronic capsules implanted deep inside the skin, close to nerves. It can record nerve signals passing through them and then later put those same signals back into those nerves. Athletes will be wearing Active Skin and using its feedback to develop even more impressive athletic prowess and become the best sportsmen and women in their discipline. Direct neural feedback from Active Skin could mean that correct muscle memory is learned for perfect movements in a matter of months rather than years.
Football, 2035 – AR Stadiums With Pro Overlays For School Or Village Matches
We’ll be used to seeing AR Stadiums with pro overlays for school or village matches. On a Sunday, we’ll see full stadiums on village greens brimming with adoring fans and overlay professional players’ images onto the other players on the green.
Golf, 2035 – Robot Greenkeepers & trainers
Full-size specialist lawn mowers will be replaced by tiny robot grounds-keepers the size of insects to tend the golf lawns at large tournaments, such as the Masters, to keep every blade of grass in place. Whilst forms of robots are currently used to cut large areas of grass at tournaments, these tiny robots will live on the green and focus on cutting each blade of grass individually.
Larger robots, preferably humanoid, could be used as trainers to show novices how to grip clubs or help decide which club to select for which circumstances.
Tennis, 2040 – Steerable Tennis Balls Linked To Racket
Steerable tennis balls linked to rackets will be in play. The variable texture on the surface of a tennis ball could change the in-flight aerodynamics to allow for steering in flight and for changing the ball’s trajectory.
There’s no doubt that these technologies will enhance athlete performance and the fan experience to help them make informed decisions about which teams to support and investments to make.
Sports Technology timeline, A Futurizon Report, by Dr Ian Pearson BSc DSc(hc) FWAAS CITP FBCS FWIF FRSA in partnership with Coral.