Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS
  • Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS
  • Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS
  • Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS
  • Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS
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Player Tracking in Team Sports with UWB and GPS

In team sports, the individual performance of each player and the execution of tactical guidelines in training units influence the success of the entire team. Transparent performance and tactical data increase training efficiency.

Tracking systems with integrated sensor technology record parameters such as sprints, movement changes, mileage and physical strain of each individual player. The analysis of the overall data provides a fine-grained picture of training efficiency and the implementation of match objectives.

Team sports are popular worldwide. In Germany, almost seven million people are members of a soccer club. Public interest is high. The Super Bowl 2020 in the NFL reached over 800 million viewers via TV and live stream.

Process Requirements

The visual assessment of performance by coaches and staff is an elementary component of training coordination in team sports. In teams with a high number of athletes in training – in NFL American Football the squad consists of 55 players in the Regular Season – the exclusively visual assessment is not sufficient. With a targeted data acquisition of the performance of each player and the monitoring of gameplay execution, the performance of the entire team can be improved in competition. Analysis based on video material has been common in team sports for about ten years.

The measurement accuracy of camera-based systems has already been scientifically evaluated. The disadvantages of video recordings are the extensive use of hardware and limited mobility, as cameras are permanently installed.


  • Measurement and memory of athletic data, such as running distance, speed, sprints, and in-game activity
  • Visualization of the real execution of tactical guidelines in game maneuvers and training forms
  • Targeted stress control for each individual player
  • Cost-efficient solution with the lowest possible hardware usage


Trackers are used as a portable solution. Each player carries a small transponder the size of a matchbox on his person during training. Trackers are fastened in a tight-fitting vest under the jersey, on a belt strap around the chest or hips, or on the waistband of the trousers. In team sports where protectors are mandatory – for instance in American football or ice hockey – trackers can be integrated into shoulder pads or helmets.

The majority of trackers on the market have an Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU). This measurement unit is a spatial combination of various inertial sensors that detect parameters such as acceleration, angular rate sensors and other data. Some systems are technologically capable of measuring not only movements in the surface but also in the upward movement. This function is advantageous for jump-intensive sports such as basketball.

The recording of movements, speeds, changes of direction and activities gives the trainer team exact insights into the fitness status and commitment of each individual player. Sports scientists and sports physicians can create comprehensive analyses to design optimal training control.

By means of GPS or UWB the positions of the players on the field are tracked at the same time. The trainer team gets insights into the real tactical line-up in real time – depending on the technology used. The compliance with tactical guidelines can be continuously monitored.

If trackers are (additionally) used in matches with live transmission, performance and statistical data can be displayed. For spectators in the stadium or in front of the TV, additional information channels and access to the sporting event are available.

Optionally, play equipment such as footballs can be upgraded with transponder technology. This additional data refines the overall picture of training sessions and real sporting competitions with further detailed information.

Technology Partner

Hardware & Software

  • Active transponders with UWB, active RFID or GPS modules – optionally with integrated sensors
  • UWB/RFID acquisition hardware
  • Analysis software
  • Interfaces to TV and streaming service providers


  • Exact, player-specific data from training and competition
  • Optimized training control and stress limitation
  • Prevention of injuries caused by excessive strain
  • Cost-effective solutions available – also suitable for amateur and hobby teams below the professional leagues
  • Enhancement of the spectator experience during live broadcasts or via app directly on the playing field
  • Sharing your own statistics in online communities for private users

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Questions? Get in contact with the editorial team!


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