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A novel, real-time biomechanical feedback system for use in rowing

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conference contribution
posted on 13.10.2014 by Philip Harfield, Ben Halkon, Sean Mitchell, Iain Phillips, Andrew May
Biomechanical feedback in water-based rowing is traditionally presented as paper reports or video overlaid with data once a session has been completed. Research into the provision of extrinsic feedback in sport suggests that real-time feedback can lead to skill acquisition and, when appropriately applied, lead to skill retention during competition and therefore a positive performance outcome. This paper presents a novel system architecture that delivers real-time feedback using commercially available off-the-shelf components. The development of a rowing specific system to test a range of feedback strategies is presented, including fading feedback, mixing feedback modalities and varying of the frequency and timing of feedback. MoSync, a cross-platform smartphone development language, was used to write the client application while the server was written as an embedded application in C and Lua that ran on top of the OpenWrt open-source router operating system. Data was transmitted wirelessly across a Wi-Fi network. A human-centred design process was led by a group of highperformance athletes and coaches and the system was shown to deliver data to up to 10 clients simultaneously. Future research will investigate the efficacy of a variety of different feedback strategies to rowers. © 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd.


The authors would like to recognise the support of the EPSRC and of the Great Britain Rowing Team.



  • Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering

Published in

Procedia Engineering




126 - 131


HARFIELD, P. ... et al, 2014. A novel, real-time biomechanical feedback system for use in rowing. Procedia Engineering, 72, pp. 126 -131


© Elsevier


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This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

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This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Elsevier under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial-No-Derivative 3.0 Licence (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0).