Ready for Some Football? What Kind?

psg_gps_trackingAre you a soccer fan? How about a football fan? Maybe both? No matter what you call it – or what it means to you – “football” wouldn’t be the same without GPS trackers.

Let’s head to France first, and check out what Paris-Saint-Germain is doing with GPS technology.

Close Monitoring

It’s really important that soccer players are in the best shape possible, but sometimes soccer gods aren’t exactly cautious. Well, PSG coaches want to put a stop to anything that’s not good for players, and that means making sure that players are protected both on and off the field.

During practice, PSG coaches use data collected from GPS trackers to create custom workouts and practice schedules for each player. Why GPS? These trackers let coaches know when players are being pushed too hard, which can result in a major injury (and less field time).

Players Benefit Too

Not only does the PSG outfit benefit from making sure that players are healthy and injury-free, but players benefit from GPS tracking technology too. Being forced to cut a career short due to an injury that could have been avoided is no way to end a career.

Even though players are pushed to the maximum during every practice, GPS lets coaches know when practices are about to turn into danger zones. It’s hard to say which one started using GPS first, but even the NFL is in on the GPS data deal.

GPS and NFL Football

Both the Buffalo Bills and the Atlanta Falcons have been using GPS technology for many months now. Both teams keep track of player progress, health, and training patterns to avoid injuries and keep teams performing at top levels. So far, results have been beneficial.

Whether on the field in France or in Buffalo, GPS tracking has proven its worth when it comes to fitness. The athletes that we watch on TV every week are at the top of their game, and a lot of that has to do with the GPS technology behind the game. GPS tracking software has come a really long way from its original roots.

Thanks to GPS, we have stronger, healthier, and faster players than ever before – and that makes for some good football, no matter what you consider football to be!

The uses for GPS tracking technology seem to increase by the minute. If you have something that needs to be tracked, we have the right device for you. Give us a call today or check out our products on our website.

A Look At Live College Ball Mascots

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The college team mascot. It’s part of college tradition.  Arizona State University has ‘Sparky the Sun Devil’; Notre Dame has a leprechaun; Louisiana State University features ‘Mike the Tiger’. But some schools have live animals as their mascot, despite protests of animal rights activists (but that’s another story altogether!)

Some use dogs, like Texas A&M (a collie named ‘Reveille’), the University of Washington (‘Dubs’, ironically NOT a husky but an Alaskan Malamute), Michigan State (‘Zeke’), Mississippi State (‘Bully the Bulldog’), and the University of Tennessee (a Bluetick Coonhound named ‘Smokey’). And who can forget the bulldog ‘Handsome Dan’, Yale’s mascot?

Other schools prefer horses, like USC (‘Traveler the Andalusian’) and Oklahoma University’s ‘Boomer’ and ‘Sooner’, the two white horses that are charged with pulling the ‘Sooner Schooner’. All in all, horses and dogs seem like great ideas for live mascots.

The Unusual

Then, you have ram mascots (Colorado State’s ‘Cam the Ram’ and UNC’s ‘Rameses’), a goat (Navy’s ‘Bill the Goat’), mules (Army’s ‘Ranger’ and ‘Stryker’), and even a Russian boar (University of Arkansas’ ‘Tusk’). What’s even stranger than a Russian boar? How about live birds? Some schools have started using birds as mascots, and with stadiums that are open-air, birds shouldn’t pose much of a problem – especially when GPS trackers are attached to a bird mascot’s back!

Hawks, And Roosters, And Eagles — Oh My!

The Air Force uses a falcon for their mascot named ‘Ace’. The University of South Carolina has ‘Sir Big Spur’ as their unofficial mascot, a live rooster. But the most majestic mascot of all is the bald eagle. Boston College has recently acquired a bald eagle, and Auburn University has had two bald eagles for some time now.  But how do they keep track of these feathered friends once they are set loose?

Both ‘Spirit’ and ‘Nova’, Auburn’s mascots, soar overhead at Jordan-Hare Stadium, intimidating the opposing team and sporting a GPS tracker.  This tracking device allows handlers to locate the birds quickly via a smartphone app if they happen to fly away.

More Accurate Than Other Methods

It’s really the ease with which you can find the birds that attracted handlers to the GPS tracker. It’s lightweight, so it doesn’t bother flight patterns, nor does it affect the birds when they fly.  Schools used to use a homing device, but this is more accurate, not to mention more convenient. GPS trackers lead owners to within 10 feet of the bird, although they say it isn’t likely the birds will escape.

Because they incorporate the stadium into their daily training routine, handlers are confident they will stay put. Why? Because their training involves food, as do their shows during a game, the birds come to associate the stadium with eating. This ensures they want to be there, and trainers make sure they’re good and hungry (but not starving, don’t worry!) prior to heading to a game.

A Plan In Place

If one or both of the birds were to escape, there is a plan set up to deal with it as quickly as possible. It involves a golf cart, a smartphone, and the GPS tracker. The app associated with the device leads handlers directly to the escapee, and the bird should fly to the handler without a problem.

Now, if Northern Alabama could find a ways to place trackers on the school’s mascots, that would be a great thing. Why? This school has two live lion mascots: ‘Leo’ and ‘Una!’ We have GPS trackers that you can attach to animals too – just be careful if you’re attempting to tag a lion!