The sports industry is being completely overtaken by wearable technology, and this trend will likely continue for some time. Some players carried tracking devices that recorded every step they took, every turn they made, and how quickly they accelerated, which were hidden from most viewers, supporters, and even opposing teams. This data was cleaned up and archived so that it could be compared to results from earlier games and practice sessions. During practices and games, coaches may keep tabs on the physical health and performance of their players, which allows them to make crucial in-game tactical decisions. Does this technique have any legal justifications? What does this mean for athletes’ personal freedoms and the requirements of fair competition?
This article will examine these concerns, as well as the origins, progress, and legal ramifications of wearable technology in professional sports. Sportswear technology is a relatively new development. Beginning in 2009, live sporting events were the first to use it. A European soccer team started by monitoring the total amount of work that players were doing throughout matches. Coaches now have the option to track biometrics in real time thanks to this advancement. Since then, wearable technology has developed from biometric monitoring to include perception and psychological factors in sports. The basic premise behind wearable technology is that specific gadgets can assist to keep sportsmen secure and in good health. This theory has been tried out and shown to work.
EPTS devices consist of wearable and camera-based technologies.
Technically speaking, they are known as “Electronic performance and tracking system (EPTS) devices” in football and consist of wearable and camera-based technologies used to manage and enhance individual and team performance. In order to evaluate the stress of physiological factors, EPTS primarily tracks player and ball positions, but it can also be used in conjunction with microelectronic devices, heart-rate monitors, and other sensors. Local positioning systems (LPS), GPS/GNSS systems, and optical-based camera systems are the three types of physical tracking devices that are currently accessible. Both The Football Association and the English Premier League employ GPS trackers during training (FA). These gadgets must be used in accordance with the relevant governing organizations.
There are detailed standing agreements that specify the range of wearable technology that is permitted each season in some professional leagues. The MLS, MLB, NBA, EPL, La Liga, and other professional leagues have organized player groups and associations. When data is sold in professional leagues, it must follow the procedures and regulations outlined in collective bargaining agreements (see BOSU, Michigan-Nike Contract: The School Seizes and Sells New Player Data (Aug. 31, 2016). The NFL Players Association and WHOOP, a human performance organization, came to an agreement about the NFL sometime in 2017. (Apr. 24, 2017). Because of the arrangement with WHOOP, athletes were able to retaliate against the NFL by selling their data.
Mobile phone manufacturers are now interested in sports technology.
Beyond the Nigerian Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) and the Federal Republic of Nigeria’s Constitution, there is no comprehensive law in Nigeria that regulates the use of data about Nigerians, particularly athletes, and their right to privacy. Sporting events and tech companies in Nigeria, however, have a growing economic goldmine to tap into. It would be negligent of the author to neglect to include the contribution of social media, digital, and mobile platforms in addition to the sports-focused technology companies.
These innovations have completely changed how sports fans interact with the teams and athletes they love, opening up new lines of communication and letting them into the daily lives of players and teams. Along with sports technology and data firms, mobile phone makers and social media behemoths have begun to become involved in sponsoring. Technology company sponsorships are more intricate than other sponsor types. As opposed to merely endorsing a sporting event by printing their logo on uniforms, venues, etc.
Vivo has partnerships with two of the biggest American leagues.
One excellent illustration of this is Chinese smartphone maker Vivo, which was almost unknown in India until it began sponsoring the Indian Premier League, the biggest cricket tournament, in 2015. It is currently India’s third-largest smartphone manufacturer, after Samsung and Xiaomi. Vivo also supported the FIFA World Cup in 2018 to strengthen its visibility on the international stage. The German software company SAP offers information to numerous top leagues, teams, and organizations in a variety of sports. They collaborate with numerous clubs in the NBA and NHL, two of the greatest American sports leagues. Through this arrangement, the sponsor’s products are integrated with its properties, resulting in a strong and natural association with both its properties and fans.
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