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31 May 2005

Football Device

Take a look at an invention that's helping sportspeople around the world.

ADRIAN FACCIONI: We've developed a product that will track what you do while you're actually on the field, so every second basically it will define your position, your speed, your heart rate and exactly where you are on the field.

REPORTER: It's a space age concept for these players from the Ainslie Kangaroos. The thought of their every movement on the footy field being tracked by satellites 20-thousand kilometres in the sky.

The information is gathered and stored in this device, the size of a small mobile phone.

LUCAS MATTHEWS (Ainslie Player): If it rings, I'm not sure whether I get someone to answer it or what? It shows where footy's going, very advanced sort of stuff.

REPORTER: The concept is the brainchild of Adrian Faccioni and his partners at GP Sports.

With a background in sports coaching they set out to develop a product tuned to human movement that would accurately record training and physiological data.

ADRIAN FACCIONI (GP Sports Director): Our initial goal was to really look at the non-contact sports particularly, running and triathlon and skiing and cycling and those areas, but then we had team sports approach and say would this be valuable in team sport? And we found that the team sport market has really jumped at it.

REPORTER: Almost three years and 14 prototypes later this is the end result, and it's proving a must-have coaching tool for elite sports around the world.

The innovation is impressive with world leading technology but how does it translate to improved performances on the field or track?

ADRIAN FACCIONI: There's always been a lot of trial and error in training and what we see our technology as being able to do is decrease over-training and injury and so therefore athletes spend more time on the paddock in shape for the demands of the game.

REPORTER: When the data collected from the unit is downloaded it provides a detailed breakdown of the movement and exertion of the player, in this case an AFL footballer.

It shows how much time is spent, walking, running, sprinting or resting, the distance covered and their heart rate.

It's called a 'time motion analysis' and allows coaches to realise exactly what physical demands are placed on a player and how to develop appropriate training programs.

ADRIAN FACCIONI: So that's something that hasn't been well understood in the past, because most of the time is spent walking and jogging a lot of the training has been based around doing a lot of long distance, where in fact where the opportunities take place when the athlete's running at high speed and doing high skill activities, and so this technology has been able to better clarify for coaches and athletes for those particular requirements.

BRETT KNOWLES, (Ainslie Coach): The more information you can get as a coach on what your players actually do out on the ground and in a game, if you can relate it back to your training and get it as close as you can as to what they do in a game, then of course it's going to be really beneficial.

REPORTER: With the eye in the sky watching, bludging in the back pocket could be a thing of the past for AFL footballers.

story notes

heart rate
Heart rate is the speed of a heart beat.

A concept is an idea.

A satellite is an object in space used to send and receive radio, television and telephone signals.

A device is an invention, an object used for a special purpose.

A personís brainchild is their original idea.

Example: English Bites is Barry Mitchell's brainchild.
Click here for more idioms and common expressions.

jumped at it
To jump at something is to eagerly accept it.

Example: She'll jump at the chance to go on TV.
Click here for more idioms and common expressions.

A prototype is an early example of a machine or other invention, from which later versions are developed

must-have coaching tool
A coaching tool is a thing that helps a coach to do their job. If something is must-have, itís very necessary. You must have it.

elite sports
Elite sport is sport played at the highest level.



To download is to copy into a computerís memory.

detailed breakdown
Here, a detailed breakdown is a division into very small parts.

Exertion is work or effort.

AFL footballer
AFL stands for the Australian Football League. Itís football played in the Australian way.

Here spent is the past participle of the irregular verb spend.
more information: spend

Sprinting is running as fast as you can.

Here understood is the past participle of the irregular verb understand.
more information: understand

bludging in the back pocket
hiding in the part of the field furthest from the action and not putting in a real effort