Due to the pandemic, there has been a greater focus on technology and its ever-growing role in sports. In particular, how athletes use technology to better themselves in their sports. PDBY interviewed a few of these athletes about what they consider to be their technological sport essentials.
The most well-known of all technologies is the cellular device most athletes use to better themselves in their sports and practice. Caroline Paul, a UP netball player, says that her iPhone XS helps her to analyse games and take her game to new heights. In 2021, she made it to the Tshwane u21 A team and the UP u21A team, where the former made it to the National Championships and came second.
Garmin Dual Heart rate monitor
This heart rate strap – according to the Garmin website – can send real-time data from your heart through Bluetooth onto other compatible gym equipment. This is a R1 399 strap that, according to UP athlete Maxine Hannan, helps her in water polo and hockey. She states that the device’s most important function is when it informs her how long she was in a ‘red zone’ for. According to Hannan, the red zone is “between 90 and 100% of your maximum heart rate.”. As a participant in two of the highest intensity sports, this is critical information for Hannan.
Tens 8 mode massager
Hannan, having also made it to the provincial hockey u12-u18 team, has played UP hockey from 2018-2022. She was also selected to be a part of the provincial water polo u12-u18 team, South Africa’s u17B Water polo team and UP Water polo from 2018-2022. She says that she would recommend this device to any athlete. This massager ranges from R1299 and Hannan says it helps her with recovery and loosening of muscles.
On the wish list for UP athletes:
Goal Line technology
This gadget is particular to soccer and especially important to Katlego Thupana, a UP student who plays the role of goalkeeper. He wishes that this technology could be implemented in youth leagues as it saves game time from being wasted. He believes that this technology, if implemented, would make the youth level of the sport more professional. Thupane made it to the Gothia World Cup in 2019, a youth world cup held in Asia.
Vertec Jump tester
Volleyball UP player, Tlalane Ntlatlapa, says that the Vertec Jump Tester is on her wish list. According to Science Sport, this is an inexpensive, portable device that measures how high an athlete’s vertical jump is. Knowing your jump height is important for volleyball and Ntlatlapa says that it will help to track her vertical jump and increase her jump rate.
Illustration: Madeeha Hazarvi