Wearable technology for tennis players that goes beyond a single sensing device in the racket or on the wrist is becoming a reality, with the introduction of the Pivot multi-sensor system. Developed by TuringSense, Pivot is designed to replace motion capture technology with a system that incorporates nine different sensors, each about the size and weight of an acorn, to provide instant feedback on a player's biomechanics without wires or cameras.
Players using the system will be able to instantly get a 360-degree view and full body analysis to help improve their form and avoid the type of repetitive motions that can cause injury. Pivot makes this possible by incorporating an accelerometer, gyroscope, and magnetometer to process up to 1,000 data samples per second for each sensor. A patented wireless and sensor fusion technology sends the data to a hub sensor that then transmits that information to the cloud for processing and immediate viewing.
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Research and experience in biomechanics by the development team went into creating the analysis algorithm, which translates raw data into a personalized assessment. The result is a detailed look at more than just your swing, but also your footwork, body position, and power generation.
The system's motion library will make Pivot even more unique. Once you've perfected a favorite swing, you can store that in the library then use it as a reference motion to instantly compare against 3D images of you practicing that stroke – all of which is available on your mobile device. The company says that it will be adding to the motion library with signature motions and teachings from professional players.
Pivot was developed in conjunction with tennis coach Nick Bollettieri, who has worked with tennis stars like Serena and Venus Williams, Andre Agassi, and Maria Sharapova. It enters a space that has seen companies like Sony and Babolat introduce single-sensor systems that are in the racket or worn on a player's wrist, and are mostly confined to providing information about a player's stroke.
TuringSense is currently in the middle of an Indiegogo campaign and has raised nearly US$97,000 against an original goal of $75,000 to help launch Pivot. There are still early bird prices available of $279 for the complete system, which is expected to be available August 2016 and retail for $449 – assuming it reaches production.
Take a look at the video to see how the Pivot system works.