Our boats are designed and built with the athlete’s feedback in mind and this type of relationship is crucial for the success of NELO. In our training sessions with the athlete’s, we collect their feedback and bring it to the factory so that the boats correspond to their high expectations. This step is of great importance in our product development cycle and we need to translate this feedback in scientific knowledge. Since February 2010, we have started a new investigation project for the motion analysis of the boats/athletes interface. How do we translate such statements has “…the boat is heavy/lighter on the bow.” or “I think I’m too pushed to the front/back of the boat.”? With the inclusion of wireless triaxial accelerometers and custom built analysis software we can now analyse the boats motion and translate such statements in scientific knowledge.

With the huge amounts of data and videos that we collect during our training sessions we then need to analyse and compare the data. A common analysis in our training sessions is the athlete’s position on the boat. How far to the front or to the back should the athlete sit? We can do a test run with the athlete in several positions and then compare the data. Looking at the acceleration and tilt profiles can give us lots of useful information but when we merge the profiles with the video, the analysis options grow radically. Dartfish is the right software tool for this task. With sports in mind the software helps us synchronize the acceleration and tilt profiles with the videos in a few clicks. We then can compare the test runs by playing the videos side by side. We can trace orientation lines in the video with the powerful graphical tools. Because Dartfish is very user friendly and quick we can make the analysis in front of the athletes and answer to their questions at the moment. We can do a series of test runs, do the video/data analysis and then do the next series of test runs with that information in mind.

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