InjureFree Blog

What Makes Up Athlete Data and Who Owns It?

Exactly what is athlete data, anyway? Athletic performance data measures an athlete’s performance as well as their overall health. This data can include a history of injuries, psychological state, stress levels, and much more, which can then be used to adjust things like practice or workout intensity to support the athlete better. Athlete data can look as simple as documenting a minor ankle injury during a soccer game using an injury report form or as complex as a wearable device that tracks gametime performance. 

The primary data source is the athletes themselves. By gaining data from sensors, wearables and other tracking devices, athletic monitoring technology provides data that has been shown to reduce injuries. The same technology has also been proven effective in improving gameplay and athletic performance. For example, biosensors can measure a cyclist’s glucose to help optimize fuel levels, while smart goggles allow a swimmer to monitor their speed and heart rate. Professional sport is pretty well protected because of the rights and responsibilities of leagues, management and players. Still, there are no such requirements for protection at the youth and amateur levels of sports.

The issue of ethical and legal data collection will only continue to grow. As of 2021, sports teams spent almost $6 billion on sports software. By 2028, That amount is projected to double to $12 billion. New software applications are continuously producing more and more data, and new state-of-the-art AI technologies are now able to analyze video and motion directly, gaining insights into how athletes move on the field.

Ultimately, The fact remains that athletes know their bodies better than anyone, so the data should belong to the athletes themselves. Every athlete should know how and why their data is being collected. Risk Management Solutions like InjureFree allow athletes to do just that. By providing a compliant, secure and accessible platform, the entire athlete care ecosystem can also include athletes to offer transparency. For example, the data itself can live in the form of injury reports to compare rates of injuries and make data-driven decisions to support athlete's health. But we don’t have to stop there! As coaches and leaders, we can use the data to inform and empower our athletes about their own performance. These opportunities to educate and build trust are paramount in the coach-athlete relationship. 

Click here to learn more about data privacy as innovative technologies explode!



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