By Jon Weisman
The Dodgers have partnered with Kitman Labs, a sports technology company with a focus on athlete management and personal injury cases in Florida. The Ireland-based Kitman will supply the Dodgers with a full suite of products.
Dodger vice president of medical services Stan Conte said the team has been working with Kitman for more than a year “to help modify Kitman Labs’ sports prevention program to make it applicable to professional baseball players.” Kitman is making its first foray into U.S. professional sports, after achieving success in soccer and rugby overseas.
“Kitman Labs has been successful in using player biometric measurements with other workload metrics to identify, in real time, soccer and rugby players who may be at risk for injuries,” Conte said in a press release. “They believe they will be able to do the same for professional baseball players. We’ve agreed to test Kitman Labs’ system at the minor-league level this year to determine its effectiveness as it applies to baseball players. Depending on the results, our objective is to implement the program at the Major League level in the future.”
Said Kitman co-founder and CEO Iarfhlaith Kelly: “It is hugely encouraging to see such a progressive organization like the Dodgers embrace our technology and research driven approach to help improve their data collection, data analysis, and their decision making in how they work with their athletes.”
Here’s more on Kitman, from the release:
At Kitman Labs, we have developed the world’s most advanced athlete management system. We utilize statistical analysis, scientific research, and industry experience to help highlight, manage, and reduce the risk of athletic injury. We take a unique, data driven approach to preventative medicine in sports and performance analytics.
Our team of experienced sports scientists understands the individual nature of each sporting discipline, and the uniqueness of each club, team and athlete. It is with this in mind that our system has been designed to mold to every need, every variant in each user. Developed to perform in the data driven world of elite sport, we harness available data to find the true source and cause of injury and to intervene before injuries ever occur.
And here’s more from Stephania Bell’s story at ESPN.com:
“We’re extremely intrigued by the concept and the potential of this system and now it’s off the drawing board and into application,” Conte said. “We’re interested to see: Will it alert us to problems before they occur?”
Stephen Smith, the co-founder of Kitman Labs, was an athletic trainer in Ireland, working with professional rugby teams. His 19-person company recently opened a California office.
Initially, his company developed hardware that was too bulky to transport. One modification Kitman developed while working with the Dodgers was the use of a portable high-definition camera to capture movement patterns. The camera connects with a computer and the results are generated in real time.