One need not look much further than the consumer sports industry to find examples of truly impressive business innovation in sports. Take golf, for example. It’s a bag of clubs and a ball, right? You could say nearly the same for baseball: one bat, one ball, plus a glove for the people out in the field. Yet whole industries are built around these sports–thriving industries, no less. Why? Let’s dive deeper and see what they’re selling.
Playing Golf without Leaving the House
There’s no time like the present for technology to help you play golf without going to the club. Enter virtual golf technology; there are quite a few good golf simulators.
Golf enthusiasts with deep pockets might spring for the Vision Premium simulator by Golfzon. It contains sensors that can capture one’s swing as well as the spin of the golf ball. In addition, the system captures the ball’s flight on the screen and allows one to store data points of the ball’s flight path on the cloud. The most amazing part about this simulator is that it has a platform that moves. The platform adjusts so that one can simulate hitting uphill and downhill. And now for the punchline: This simulator costs $46,000.
For a more budget-friendly simulation, one can consider the Skytrak simulator. This golf simulator as it can function on a tablet or personal computer. The Skytrak has a feature that allows one to practice on greens. You can even get an idea of your skills through the simulator’s Skills Assessment feature. The price of the Skytrak is about $2K (plus annual payments of $100 for the simulator’s software).
That’s two innovative products–one on either end of the price spectrum.
Tech to Fix Your Baseball Swing
A batter needs to be aware if they are maintaining the proper mechanics of a swing. Luckily, there are a couple of sophisticated technologies that are geared towards doing that just.
One good option is the K-Vest. With the K-Vest, sensors are placed on the upper torso, arm, hand, and leading arm of a batter. This is done for the purpose of capturing motion so that one’s swing can be analyzed. Data points are taken from each sensor. That data is then put into a laptop, and a model of one’s swing is created in 3D Form.
The system can also be set to target certain characteristics of one’s swings. One has the option of targeting one’s torso bend. If one wants to target how one’s pelvis rotates when they swing, they can do so.
The K-Vest has spread across the baseball world. Twenty-one teams in major league baseball are using it. It is also popular among hitting academies. The K-Vest rings up at $5,500 per kit.
Another great option is Swingtracker, which uses sensor technology. The slight difference is that the sensor technology is placed on the knob of a baseball bat. Info about swing angles and swing velocities are recorded. This technology has a feature called the damage potential, which measures baseball’s flight distance and path.
The Swingtracker is used by 15 major league baseball teams. It is currently priced at $99.99, and the software is $4.99 per month.
Innovation Doesn’t Always Tackle the Upper End of the Market
Not all sports innovation is reserved for high-ticket items. What about the field of gender reveals?
As we all may know, gender reveals have been commonplace for couples. However, a recent trend that has taken hold for gender reveals is the use of the gender reveal golf ball. You might have seen these on ESPN. The golf ball explodes and fills the air with pink or blue powder, telling your friends the sex of the baby.
Golf isn’t the only sport to be the subject of innovation. You can buy a gender reveal baseball, too. The golf ball costs about $13, and the baseball comes in at about $25.