The NFL’s Buffalo Bills are going high-tech. For the first time in the history of professional football, an NFL team is adopting GPS tracking technology in its strength and conditioning programs. The data compiled will eventually make a difference in the way practices are run, and the work loads that the Bills put on their players.
After a year of exhaustive research, the Buffalo Bills finally decided on a method to monitor player workloads during practices. They’ve decided to go high-tech, and have chosen
GPS tracking technology to help streamline their on-field strength and conditioning programs. Already in use through spring practices, the team now has a baseline database on each player as training camp approaches.
Using the data to take numerous measurements, the team is creating standards for each player based on their actual on-field workload and performance. Among the GPS tracking data being collected is acceleration and deceleration, change of direction, top speed, and total distance run. The ultimate goal is to use the cumulative workload to determine which players might or might not be susceptible to injury. The team is wary of consecutive days of exceptionally high workloads. In the event that a player’s body is taxed due to excess fatigue, the coaches are proactively advised to take necessary precautions.
Workload limits can also be set for each player. As the GPS tracking data continues to compile, the training staff measures when a players’ peak performance begins to plateau and then drop. This signifies that the muscles have reached the point of maximum exertion and fatigue, and that the player has reached the point where he is an injury risk. Though the program is still in its infancy, the Bills plan to continue building their database over the course of the next year. The goal is to eventually design their practices based on the scientific data that they’ve compiled.
We have more great article in our archives on GPS tracking technology. “GPS Tracking Leads to Fired Labor Employee. Case in Appeals Court.”