FROM PER­FOR­MANCE TO tech­nique

Canadian Running - - EXOTIC DESTINATION -

In a pa­per pub­lished three years ago, a com­puter sci­en­tist and a re­searcher of game de­sign in­ves­ti­gated the devel­op­ment and trends in tech­nolo­gies used for run train­ing. Mads Moller Jense and Floyd Mueller found that they are chang­ing from fo­cus­ing solely on per­for­mance to hav­ing an ad­di­tional fo­cus on the tech­nique. Their re­search in­di­cates where tech­nol­ogy is likely to grow.

To­day, wear­able sen­sors (i.e. Sen­so­ria’s sock-worn sen­sors or smart shoes like UA’s hovr Sonic, Al­tra and Nike+ Train­ing con­nected to MapMyRun) and mo­tion de­tec­tion make it pos­si­ble to pro­file run­ning styles, iden­tify op­por­tu­ni­ties for im­prove­ments, mon­i­tor pace and rec­og­nize fa­tigue in­di­ca­tors. To­mor­row, the run­ner may re­ceive per­son­al­ized and im­me­di­ate coach­ing (and

“RE­MEM­BER THAT YOU CON­TROL YOUR DE­VICES. THEY SHOULDN’ T CON­TROL YOU .”

a chip that will tell you when it’s time to buy new shoes).

To­day’s tech­nique-re­lated pa­ram­e­ters are pri­mar­ily made avail­able to run­ners af­ter their run, so it is hard for run­ners to ad­just their run­ning style in real time. Jense and Mueller sug­gest tech­nol­ogy can work to cre­ate as­sis­tive in­ter­faces, which are sys­tems that as­sist run­ners in real-time move­ments as they are ex­e­cuted, such as a ex­ces­sive arm move­ments.

These types of prod­ucts are al­ready on mar­ket, such as Lumo, the por­ta­ble run­ning coach, and the as­sis­tive tech­nol­ogy Aira, which con­nects the blind or whose with low vi­sion to a sighted pro­fes­sional agent who de­liv­ers vis­ual as­sis­tance. In 2017, a legally blind run­ner com­pleted his eighth Bos­ton Marathon. In ad­di­tion to his sighted guide run­ning part­ner, the run­ner used Aira and wore a pair of Google Glasses that sent a live feed to an agent over 900 kilo­me­tres away who coached him through a Blue­tooth head­set.

Com­pa­nies like So­los and Everysight are de­sign­ing smart glasses for sighted ath­letes and ex­plor­ing the in­ter­sec­tion­alit y with ar­tif icial re­al­ity. It will be in­ter­est­ing to see what evolves for the run­ner once they are dis­creet and light enough.

Jense and Mueller say the tech­nol­ogy of to­mor­row will model run coaches with per­son­al­ized and tech­nique-fo­cused, train­ing feed­back sys­tems dur­ing runs. Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence prod­ucts like LifeBeam Vi are al­ready of­fer­ing this with bio-sens­ing ear­buds and live coach­ing.

Shoe de­sign­ers like Bret Schoolmeester of Nike say the com­pany is look­ing at how shoes can re­veal use­ful truths about how we run – like telling us if we are heel, fore­foot or mid­foot strik­ers, since run­ners have a ter­ri­ble track record to self di­ag­nose cor­rectly.

Look out for more re­spon­sive prod­ucts – like Netf lix and Spo­tify for run­ners – with tar­get guid­ance and sug­ges­tions based on ac­tual per­for­mance and not false self aware­ness.

OP­PO­SITE, RIGHT AND BE­LOW At the Cana­dian Sports In­sti­tute, us­ing sen­sors on shoes to mine biome­chanic run data RIGHT BOT­TOM Everysight Rap­tor sun­glasses of­fer a heads up dis­play with re­al­time run met­rics and nav­i­ga­tion

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