IoT and Real Time Sports Engagement



We were asked to work on a speculative concept for the ways in which the emerging IoT landscape could impact the way we consume and engage with sports.

I started, as I normally do, with a mural on the subject matter to collect some ideas and thoughts, before handing over to Sergio and the team to work on the concept.

I already had a structure in mind, however, so it didn’t take too long to fill in the gaps.

We really wanted to get across how participants, through the use of wearables, IoT devices and sensors, could be able to measurably benchmark athletes and compare their own lifestyle and training. Through this connection in the data, give new opportunities to feel both an emotional and physical connection to their heroes.

We focussed initially on martial arts.

As a 1st Dan Black belt in Karate, it’s something I know a little about and certainly have a passion for myself.

I thought about 3 zones in which we would focus our thinking:

1. Fight Ready
Using wearables data to track fighter readiness. This would cover everything from general lifestyle, behaviour, nutrition, training regime, back story, motivation, family and networks.

2. Fight Night
Head to Head stats based on real-time wearables data that can add quantitative comparison to the usual basic published stats - height, weight, reach etc.

3. Smash Moments
You know those moments that get played over and over on HD replays? As the glove penetrates the guard and connects with the jaw, knocking blood and saliva across the mat? Well, wouldn’t it be great to measure those moments, speed, velocity, force, impact. Just how HARD did he get hit?

From here we worked on an initial concept document, that captured the essence of these three areas.

And subsequently, we expanded the scope of our sports to a broader arena, including Tennis, Rugby & Golf.

We would love to hear what you think of the ideas we proposed at this early stage and any ideas of your own about the role of technology in competitive sports, particularly when used to improve audience participation and engagement.