Technology

Technology boosts Dal Tigers’ performance

The Dal Tigers are working with a cutting-edge sports technology company to help their varsity athletes reach their full potential

The team in training for the weekend
The team in training for the weekend   Luke Yates

Dalhousie athletes are feeling the benefits of using new training technology.

Matthew Woods, one of the players on the men’s volleyball team at Dalhousie, says, “It definitely has helped me. I noticed big improvements with all the muscles in my body. I’m noticing more verticals in my jump and I’m just hitting the ball harder.”

Players and coaches say their partnership with Kinduct, a Halifax-based sports technology company, is leading to gains in training and performance.

Three varsity teams have been working with the company and, according to men’s volleyball coach Dan Ota, it has been successful so far.

“The key is being able to communicate with the athletes,” says Ota. “Students can plug in classes and workouts and Kinduct plans the whole week out.”

A player jumps to spike the ball
A player jumps to spike the ball   Luke Yates

Athlete management

Kinduct COO Kevin Rimmer describes the program as a tool to aggregate third party data. From there, the software is able to create tailored training plans for individual athletes.

“You can run assessments to look at recovery and training load. Athletes fill out journals with comments on things like their perceived rate of exertion. This could then be used to indicate problems such as overtraining or areas to work on.”

Dalhousie is in its first year of testing the software and Rimmer says, with time, the school will be able to take historical data and use it to predict future outcomes.

“You can track players every day and know how they perform under different situations,” he said.

Several professional sports teams, including some from the NHL, NBA and MLB, have already partnered with Kinduct. Rimmer says basketball is perfect for using the program as the NBA has overhead cameras at every game. These track the movements and scoring of every player. These stats can be correlated with training and game time to predict the ideal workload for each individual.

Considerable potential

Rimmer feels Kinduct has a big opportunity to develop further.

“We want to overcome some of the barriers in sport, such as who can afford coaches and nutritionists. We also want to provide development paths by identifying talent at an early age.”

He adds that, in time, the company should be able to assess a young athlete and compare their attributes to current professionals at a similar age. Then, with the right training program, it could be possible to predict the stars of the future.

Noticed improvements

Ota says that Dal athletes have been using the software to manage and log training. Players can access videos of the exercises that they should be doing in the gym and the results can then be measured through testing.

Coach Ota watches on as a player tests his jump height
Coach Ota watches on as a player tests his jump height   Luke Yates

Woods says the software has been easy to use.

“Kinduct has been amazing so far. It’s pretty straightforward. The guys really enjoy how there are videos and if they have any questions they can directly contact Kinduct,” he says.

Dalhousie athletic director Tim Maloney feels that the partnership with Kinduct shows the university’s commitment to looking after their athletes and helping them reach their potential.

“We are able to monitor their training during the season, but can also remotely keep track of how they’re doing out of season,” he says.

The Dalhousie men’s volleyball team has an impressive record in the history of their Atlantic University Sport conference and will be looking to use Kinduct to help keep them ahead of their rivals. They currently lie first ahead of a crucial double-header against the University of New Brunswick this weekend.