The past few months haven't been kind to FIFA, football's governing body, after news broke that its top officials were being investigated for corruption crimes. But the organization isn't letting those legal woes get in the way of improving the sport's future. Next month FIFA and the International Football Association Board (IFAB), which is responsible for determining the rules of
soccer football, will host meetings to develop a wearable standard for the game. In a nutshell, the idea behind this initiative is to have all professional teams using the same data-tracking technologies for training purposes. Down the line, these could make their way to live matches, to help doctors and coaches on the sidelines. Since there isn't a unified system right now, each club is allowed to work with any method they choose, so the goal is to develop a solution that works equally for everybody across the FIFA network.
The Seattle Sounders, for instance, use systems from Catapult and Omegawave. This allows the team to monitor a variety of health and fitness elements from players, such as energy output, endurance, nutrition, sleep patterns and levels of fatigue. As SportTechie notes, the key for technologies being presented to FIFA is that they have "preventative medical benefits and will not pose danger to athletes." It'll be interesting to hear what kind of pitches the football overlords receive from wearable companies next month, and whether or not FIFA is going to be able to meet every club's needs. Because Real Salt Lake and Manchester United are likely to have different views on how they track data.
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