Virtual Reality is being implemented in a variety of major industries from retail, to medicine, and even sports. There are currently sports-related VR apps on the market that allow the user to watch sporting events as if they are actually sitting courtside or on the sidelines; but what about using Virtual Reality to train and recruit for sports? With the help of VR Company STRIVR, at least seven NFL teams and 13 NCAA football teams are already using Virtual Reality as part of their training program. Some of these teams include the Dallas Cowboys, New England Patriots, and New York Jets in the NFL, as well as Auburn, Michigan, and Stanford in the NCAA. Using STRIVR’s software on a VR headset, players can analyze themselves executing previously recorded drills and plays and to breakdown game film of upcoming opponents. For Stanford’s starting quarterback Kevin Hogan, his pass completion percentage increased from 63.8% to 76.3% after using STRIVR. Virtual training allows players to have for more “on-field” practices and get more reps in that are otherwise limited during practice by doing so virtually.
Aside from just practices, VR also serves a great purpose in the scouting and recruitment process, helping scouts better judge a player’s potential. VR provides more in-depth insights compared to typical scouting combines. VR gives both coaches and scouts the ability to tell where a quarterback is looking—if he is looking at the right target or not—before the ball leaves his hand. With the VR and AR markets on the rise, and the seal of approval from NFL Commissioner Roger Gooddell, Virtual Reality’s presence in football is sure to increase over the coming years.
Below is the full infographic by Ohio University: