While training for Tokyo, and running in Sagami Bay this summer, the U.S. Sailing Team used Garmin laptops and hand tools to provide significant information to sailors and coaches. It’s crucial to excel in how our athletes ’bodies are made, how fast the boats are moving, and how sailing conditions are changing in our sport. Garmin devices allowed the Group to collect quantifiable data to help prepare for the Games.
During the five years prior to the summer race, U.S. Sailing Team sailors used Quatix and Forerunner series Garmin suits to keep track of their fitness and boat performance in the water. The laptops are easy to use, and the recording function provides detailed routes, information on each tactical decision, and data on how each maneuver is performed. When sailors return ashore, the activity is automatically synchronized with the Garmin Connect Cloud, enabling sailors, coaches, physiotherapists, and performance analysts to access data and provide feedback on training, even remotely.
Garmin’s Connect IQ SDK allows the team to further customize the use of Garmin devices with applications by customizing the activity function of browsing data processing, and showing team coaches and sailors the measurements they need to train in the water. Finnish sailor and Olympian Luke Muller of the U.S. Sailing Team tracked data from an application running on his Forerunner 945 to quantify different navigation techniques. “I would keep track of my Garmin’s speed, average speed and lap time. When sailing against the wind, I would look at live speed to set my speed standard and understand my maximum speed. Below the wind, I would set two marks for timed laps and compare lap times to quantify speed differences. ”Especially in individual training sessions, Luke’s app provides performance feedback by instantly refining techniques in water. it gave me the most training sessions to get the most out of, ”he said.
Strict rules of the gaming regatta allowed teams to carry GPS navigation in their car boats during the competition; no other electronics were allowed. The U.S. Sailing Group chose the Garmin GPSMAP 86s as the best handheld marine GPS to launch. The waterproof and floating form factor was ideal in the 5.8 m RIBs used as a bus container, where conditions can be harsh and space out of place. The GPSMAP 86s were hand-loaded with racing areas, fishing exclusion zones, “Playground” markings and all Olympic regatta navigation limits. Teams face severe penalties for crossing the border, so it was essential to display the full photo of the border location. Seriously, the coaches also used the man-on-boat function in the GPSMAP 86s to measure currents in Sagami Bay without the need for a fixed reference point. Especially after the typhoon passed through the typhoon north of Tokyo, these currents were strong and unpredictable, and became a key factor in the racing strategy.
The US Sailing Team has been preparing for Marseille and the 2024 Games for more than a year. Thanks to Garmin, the U.S. Technology sponsor of the U.S. Sailing Team, each sailing session is more efficient. Thanks to Garmin’s extensive product ecosystem, along with the functionality and customization of the SDK data, the advances in data availability are endless. The integration of products and technology is key to maximizing the Group’s potential in 2024, and with just two more summer sailing seasons ahead of the Games, the fact that training is effective makes a difference.