Shots and Dunks – Wearables for use in basketball

Validation of sports technologies for the NBA (National Basketball Association)

Following an international selection procedure, the National Basketball Association (NBA) Wearables Committee and the National Basketball Player Association (NBPA) have commissioned us to validate the suitability of various commercially available wearable measuring systems for use in sports. Wearables are already used by numerous NBA teams during games and in training.

As positioning specialists, we collect data relating to move- ments and test the wearables for measurements such as player speed, distance covered, jump height when receiving the ball and under the basket, and the number of direction changes and steps taken. These data provide players and trainers with key information that allows optimum monitoring of games and training.

Vital parameters such as heart rate, TRIMP (training impulse) training load, and muscle activity (ECG) are validated by our Image Processing and Medical Engineering department, while the University of Michigan carries out the safety tests. The university coordinates all the tasks and provides all of the teams with the results for each tested system on an annual basis. In work involving athletes, it is essential to consider not only human factors but also ethical regulations. Our measurement procedures were considered to ensure fair and consistent assessment from the planning stage through to the analysis of measurement data. The current phase of validation will be completed in 2020.