Many people use fitness trackers to monitor their own health.
These trackers, which are often worn around the wrist, the ankle, or are stored in pockets, serve many purposes.
They track the number of steps a person takes in a day, give pulse reports, and estimate calories burned. Some more advanced models track the wearer’s sleep patterns and body temperature.
As these technologies become more widespread, it only makes sense that they would eventually be adopted by not only human athletes, but sports superstars of the equine variety.
What are the benefits of fitness trackers and how can horse racing betting sites use it to benefit of people waging? Let’s take a look.
Fitness For Jockeys
Jockeys, like any other athlete, have to closely monitor their bodies to maintain peak performance.
For a jockey, body composition is key. Jockeys must have enough muscle mass to be able to control their mounts, while maintaining a low enough level of body weight to be able to make their assigned weights for races.
Any fitness tracker can help with that, but trackers made especially for jockeys can also help with racing-specific measurements. Some trackers can detect how efficient and aerodynamic a jockey’s posture aboard the horse is. The slightest rock forward or backward can affect factors such as draft, which can change the outcome of a tight race. These same adjustments, however, can upset a jockey’s balance if they overcorrect, so constant monitoring is essential.,
Fitness For Horses
Equally important is the fitness of the horse.
As an ankle monitor would be difficult to keep affixed to a horse in flight, most of the trackers that trainers use for their charges clip instead to their saddlecloth. They are durable enough to survive the jostling that comes with this precarious position, but sensitive enough to capture a lot of data regarding the horse.
Good racehorse fitness trackers can calculate not only heart rate and speed, but also stride length and efficiency. Some of these trackers are also permitted to be carried during races at select tracks, so that trainers can compare a ]]]horse’s performance during a morning workout when alone to their exertion during a race with a full field of competitors.
Any time tracking information is updated and provided to racetracks throughout the world, those tracks become that much safer for humans and horses alike.
In addition to detecting how efficient a workout is, these trackers can determine slight irregularities in a horse’s stride. They become sensitive to the lameness in an unsound horse’s stride before even the most seasoned trainer could.
If a horse is even the slightest bit “off” in one leg, he or she will automatically shift more weight onto other legs. This throws the horse off balance, and even if the horse does not display overt distress, he or she risks either further damaging the lame leg or overcompensating and putting too much stress on the other legs, potentially causing injury there.
Any time injury occurs it is potentially catastrophic, but no more so than if it were to happen during a race. If that happens, then not only is the injured horse at risk, but also the jockey, as well as any other competitors in the race which now have to contend with a fallen horse. Knowing prior to a race that a horse is slightly unsound can allow a trainer to pinpoint and treat a problem before it becomes disastrous.
Another safety concern that technology has helped with is overheating. Horses who overheat risk seriously stressing their cardiovascular systems, leading to potentially devastating collapses. Many tracks have now installed thermal imaging cameras, which can detect the temperature of racehorses as they proceed toward and away from their races.
Whether for workout efficiency or safety, fitness trackers bring a wealth of information to jockeys and trainers!