Jul 23rd, 2016
Jordan Spieth's been wearing smart golf shoes
Courtesy of Under Armour
Words: John Dean Photography: Getty Images
Jordan Spieth has been wearing 'smart' golf shoes, courtesy of his sponsor Under Armour.
Under Armour are convinced that ‘connected fitness’ will be the next big thing, with athletes being able to track their movements, workouts, sleep and other metrics to boost their performance.
However, professional golfers aren’t permitted to track their movements with wearable tracking bands during competition. Under Armour therefore took the sensor technology it uses in the company’s recently launched ‘Smart’ Speedform Gemini 2 Record Equipped shoe and applied it to the brand’s first-ever, custom-made smart golf shoe.
Throughout the four days of competition, Spieth walked around 54,000 steps, averaging 13,500 steps per day during The Open.
“Data collection is a big part of getting better,” Spieth told Fortune. “I want to be smarter about how I train.”
Spieth uses the Under Armour Record system to track his sleep and eating patterns. He told Fortune that he prefers to sleep at least 8 hours every night. In terms of his food intake, Spieth favors “whole, real foods” as much as possible, and his go-to snack right now is granola. He admits he could do better staying more hydrated (his goal is to consume at least 140 ounces of fluids each day).
The intensify of his workouts and ensuring he gets the right amount of sleep, especially when traveling abroad, are the metrics that are most critical to his day-to-day performance.
“The data around overall performance applies in ways that are more important than just runners and cyclists,” says Jason LaRose, senior vice president of global e-commerce at Under Armour. “Golf is a natural place for us, as it has evolved as a sport over the past 20 years.”
Most connected gear has so far focused on tracking steps, accounting for walks or running strides, and biking. That’s because those movements are easy to track using GPS technology. But Under Armour is finding ways to bring that technology and insights to other sports, like golf or swimming.
Under Armour only began selling golf shoes in April of this year, with Jordan Spieth have a good deal of input.
In time more passive data tracking will come from shirts and shoes, making it easier for individuals to track their progress without having to input much information into their mobile apps.
“As a company that makes shirts and shoes, we are excited about that,” said LaRose. “We will continue to pursue avenues to make athletes better.”
Spieth recognizes that data collection is becoming increasingly important for golfers, and commented: “I’m really competitive so it becomes a personal challenge to see if I can work out longer than I did the day before.”