GPS device helps CMU soccer players reduce risk of injury - WNEM TV 5

GPS device helps CMU soccer players reduce risk of injury

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Source: CBS Source: CBS

Soccer players at Central Michigan University are using a new tool to help them perfect their game.

The team started wearing a GPS device that tracks everything from movement to speed. The information collected helps coaches keep players in shape and reduce the risk of injury.

“It keeps us in shape and towards the right direction of a long term healthy season,” Alexis Pelafas said.

CMU soccer players like Pelafas now have new technology to help improve their game. The GPS is worn on the outside of their jerseys.

“They're really able to look at our numbers and tell us if we're going to be the people that do a little bit less today or have to do a little more,” said Pelafas.

The GPS tracks everything from movement, to distance and speed, and is fed in real-time to students and professors like Paul O’Connor.

“We mainly use it to monitor player loads we want to see how hard the player is actually working during the session,” O’Connor said. “So, we know if they're working too hard there's a risk of getting fatigued and injured and if they're not working hard enough they come into a match and loads increased they're going to get injured as well.”

Fifth year head coach Peter McGahey said the new technology has been transformative.

“As a coach, you're always wondering how hard can we? Does it have to be easy? Does it have to be hard? Where is the intensity level? We sort of have the science to now support antidotally what you've always known. With our season and how it's set up the injury reduction and maximizing performance any edge you can have is certainly going to help,” McGahey said.

Right now, just the women's soccer team is using this technology but there's the possibility other teams could pick it up in the future.

Copyright 2017 CBS News / 9 & 10 News. All rights reserved. 

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