gps for fitness

December 15, 2014

Advantages of GPS Systems in Sports

Global Positioning Systems, more popularly known as GPS, has been around in the military for a while now and is now starting to be utilized by consumers as well. When we here the term GPS, the first thing that usually comes to our minds is car navigation systems that assist us in driving and navigating highways, roads and streets. We don’t usually associate them with sports. GPS technology, as a matter of fact, is very useful in lots of different sports activities.

GPS – What is it exactly?

There are currently 24 satellites that orbit the earth, and this network of satellites is what GPS uses. The system works once it can detect 4 satellites at a time, allowing it to accurately pinpoint a location. The signal continues to be received and once you change your location or speed, it takes note of the change of location and/or speed. Currently we can find GPS gadgets that are handheld but their accuracy is impeccable.

How does GPS become useful in sports activities?

GPS can be useful in a lot of sports activities since the technology works to record changes in distance, speed and even elevation, although only to a lesser extent. This capability can be used to record an athlete’s distance, speed and elevation for monitoring purposes. Because a lot of receivers are small in size, it makes it very convenient to attach or clip to your body as you participate in the sport and track your progress.

GPS for Runners

Speed and distance is what is being measured in running sports. You will be declared the best runner if you are able to cover the most distance in the least amount of time. This is the focus of runners during training. GPS systems for runners usually come in the form of watches. Runners wear them around their wrists and these watches take note of the athletes distance and speed. A lot of these GPS watches also have built in heart rate monitors. The data recorded by these gadgets can be reviewed at a later time via a PC for comparison purposes.

GPS for Golfers

While speed is not important in golf, distance and location is what matters the most. This is where GPS systems become useful. With golf GPS systems, you can obtain the most accurate data when it comes to the distance between your current location and a hole. This helps you in choosing the appropriate club for better game results.

GPS for Cyclists and Bikers

Similar to running sports, cycling is also about speed and distance. Most GPS units for cycling can be attached to the bike and therefore are larger in size. You can also find maps in GPS units for cycling as well as your route, aside from being able to also plan for further routes. You are able to enjoy all these while viewing your distance, speed, climb, descent and time.


So you’ve seen how GPS systems can be useful for a lot of sports activities. Their best contribution is the ability to be able to record and track one’s progress in moving sports such as running and cycling while allowing the ability to record and track one’s location accurately for location oriented sports such as golf. Because good GPS systems are not cheap, feel free to conduct your own research to find the most appropriate system for you.