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Catapult One Will Lopes

Exclusive: Catapult One Bringing Elite Data To Consumer-Level

G
lobal performance data company, Catapult, has announced the launch of its wearable performance product, Catapult One, targeted at providing consumers access to elite sports insights.

In an interview with Ministry of Sport, Catapult CEO, Will Lopes, discussed the opportunity for grassroots level athletes to access the high-performance insights often available for only elite athletes.

“The focus here is really, how do you create the next generation of elite athletes, and in order to create better athletes who understand better insights about player load and exertion levels, you have to make sure the same insights that we’re providing today to elite athletes are available,” Lopes told Ministry of Sport.

“It’s important knowledge for people to understand, once they know those insights, how to train to improve them, and that access to that training component is not available to everyone.

“It was important for us to really look out years later and think ‘how are we going to train the next generation of athletes’, and what’s interesting about what we’re doing is we’re creating training plans that are quite sophisticated at the elite level, to help the amateur athlete.

“I think that’s novel in the industry, because you look at a lot of the wearables that exist for consumers, they tend to be very good at recording data, but they don’t tend to be very good at helping athletes use that data to make a difference.

“If there’s one thing we’ve learned as Catapult, the sports science that goes behind our metrics and insights that are used to help athletes make better decisions on or off the field has had a significant impact on sports, so we wanted to bring that down to the consumer level,” he said.

On the potential for grassroots athletes and clubs to better monetise themselves with elite level performance data and insights, Lopes said there’s a number of applications.

“In general, they can use the data in a couple ways, one to obviously improve, look at it at understand how to train better and smarter, and we’re utilising that data to give them support on that,” Lopes said.

“There are actually quite a bit of sponsors looking at who is the next big athlete or next big thing in sports, and they can use Catapult One data to objectively show that.

“There’s a difference, particularly with the scouting component, there’s things you can’t see like the exertion level of an athlete to do certain tasks and they can use that data to objectively show where they stand against that.

“The third thing is also to help teams in particular from an athletic perspective to understand where each athlete compares.

“If I have a team of under 18, where are they at in their journey of improvement.

“The interesting thing is that the world of data and insights has become quite sophisticated in all parts of our lives, from figuring out who to advertise to, to what is the algorithm you want to use for an elite athlete to improve their performance.

“Basically, we’re making those same insights available to the average athlete, so from a performance perspective, it’s really about improving yourself, improving your team, with the same tools that are used at the very elite level.

“When I say improvement, the result is helping athletes perform better so they can stay on the field longer, play better, and avoid injury, those are really the value propositions.

“From a sponsor and advertising perspective, it’s not something Catapult One is focused on, but it’s an area where particularly smaller teams could utilise the data to help really show the value of athleticism on the field and it does make a difference,” he told Ministry of Sport.

Catapult One was designed specifically for athletes across football, American football, rugby, Australian rules football, tennis, cricket, hockey, and lacrosse, based off the performance metrics Catapult delivers to more than 3,200 elite teams worldwide.