How Technology Affects Sports Essay Research Paper

How Technology Affects Sports? Essay, Research Paper

How Does Technology affect Sports?

By Johnny Avalanche

Technology is affecting sports more and more every day. The new aspects of technology are not just affecting the athletes, or even just the fans, but it is affecting everyone. Athletes, coaches, trainers, and the fans are affected more than anyone else in a variety of ways.

For athletes to stay competitive and reach their goals, they have to work harder than their competition. This is becoming easier for all athletes with the emergence if many things. For example, shoes: The first known shoe invented for basketball only, was invented in 1922. In 1922, the Chuck Taylor All-Star was strictly sold at Montgomery Ward for $2.95. There were 12 holes for laces and the shoes came up about 5 inches past the ankle. As the years passed, athletic shoes continued to be made with canvas, which made the shoe very heavy, not to mention uncomfortable. Even into the 1970?s, there were basically only two athletic shoe companies, Converse, the maker of Chuck Taylor?s, and Adidas, who mostly made tennis shoes.

In today?s market, there are over 20 popular athletic shoe companies, and still at the top are Converse and Adidas. Nike has made the biggest impact in athletic shoe technology. They revolutionized the athletic shoe with the emergence of the Air Jordan in the early 1980?s. They began to use lighter materials to make the shoe, along with air in the sole, to provide for comfort and safety for the shoe owner.

Coaches are also affected by technology. There are new methods, available for download or purchase, to help a coach do his job. Practice Planner Pro, a company started in 1996, is the main producer of software for coaches. Coaches are able to use a simple program to create practice schedules, and keep stats of a game. They can even enter their teams? information, along with their opponents? information, and the computer program will devise a game plan, based on how each team matches up. Practice Planner Pro can also help a coach devise a training schedule for their team, to maximize the team?s abilities.

Trainers, by helping athletes and coaches, are also affected by technology. Because highly advanced training methods are invented everyday, people are beginning to prefer interactive trainers to human trainers. James W. Davis, of MIT, started his own company called, James W. Davis Interactive Systems. Mr. Davis, along with his research and development team, created a program called Virtual PAT. Virtual PAT is a personal trainer, on viewed on a computer, in which the trainee can interact with the computer trainer. The trainee can choose which instructor like prefer, depending on their mood. For example, if they are in a hard-working mood, they can choose a drill sergeant, and be yelled at. However, depending on the performance of the trainee, the instructor, with the help of motion templates, comments on their performance. They can say anything from, ?Good work?, to ?Let?s get moving!?

Although it can affect trainers positively, and show them in a positive light, the computer trainers are not all good. Because many people are starting to use these interactive inventions more and more, many trainers are beginning to fall by the wayside.

Sports fans are affected more than anyone by technology. Every since 1979, ESPN has revolutionize the sports world with, 4 TV channels, a magazine, and the #2 most visited site on the entire world wide web. Thanks to ESPN, and other companies, such as CNNSI, and Fox Sports, fans are able to do things out of the ordinary. Fans can now watch games and highlights of games unavailable on television. Many fans also enjoy playing fantasy sports against friends and strangers from around the world. According to, the number of fantasy sports participants have increased more and more every year, for the past five. Now, fans are able to gamble online, even now, without a credit card. Video games have also become more popular, due mostly to EA Sports and 989 Sports. Also, fans can interact with their favorite athlete over the Internet. From time to time, an athlete will do an interview via the Internet and some fans are lucky enough to have their questions answered.

Technology has changed sports so much in recent years; it should be interesting to see what happens from now on.


1.Intille, Stephen. “Sport Online.” May 1996. (December 5, 1999).

2.Rasmussen, John. “Sports and Technology.” April 1996. (December 5, 1999)

3. J. E. Rigdon, “Online: Interactive TV From Internet May be

in Sight”, The Wall Street Journal, Thursday, Dec 7, 1995, Sec B, p 1.

4.Davis, James. Home page. 1 December 1999 .

5. Practice Planner Pro. May 1998 .


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