Growing Importance of Technology in Youth Sports

“There’s never been a better time to be in charge of your company’s technology.”

– Chief Information Officer of the NFL, Michele McKenna-Doyle

The summer season offers an exciting time in high school sports: Competitive athletes travel across the United States, coaches gear up for a busy fall season, and parents look forward to a season of fundraising and summer camps. Before the advancement of technology, however, a busy summer meant you might miss out on sports news and information from your local teams. A write-up on your team’s all-star might slip through the cracks, or a posting of the fall practice schedule could be overlooked.

Thanks to technology and innovation in all aspects of sports, these past pain points are no longer a reality. Additionally, technology is being utilized to improve sports at every level.
For instance, the Chief Information Officer of the NFL, Michele McKenna-Doyle, implemented a new injury video-review system in that looks out for potential concussions, and allows for on-field doctors to pull players out of the game if the video-review looks potentially dangerous.
“If you can see the mechanics of an injury, it’s much easier to treat,” McKenna-Doyle said. “There’s never been a better time to be in charge of your company’s technology.”
As this shift towards technology is embraced in nearly every aspect of sports, the progression of athletic departments turning to technological innovation to better suit their wide range of responsibilities is only natural. As athletic directors accumulate tools to help with the many tasks they handle, however, a growing need exists for integration between these tools. Fortunately, organizations recognize these needs, and are subsequently offering inclusive and innovative dashboards for athletic directors to serve athletes, parents and fans alike.
Frankly, athletic directors and coaches from around the country have no choice but to utilize technology to lighten their workload. Savvy professionals in high school sports, whether they are tech-savvy or not, understand the requirement of incorporating technology to navigate formerly tricky areas of the job, like concussion and health protocol.

Savvy professionals in high school sports…understand the requirement of incorporating technology to navigate formerly tricky areas of the job, like concussion and health protocol.

Player’s Health is an example of how technology helps high school athletic departments share critical health data without violating strict, and necessary, HIPAA standards. This program solves for critical improvements in recording, communication and efficiency of injury management tools for athletes. This mobile-optimized platform grants access to coaches for a snapshot of a player’s health background and it also allows parents, not sports personnel, to create this background. In essence, you can ensure strict concussion and health protocol is followed via input from both parents and physicians. Player’s Health states:
“We believe the parent, not the coach, should determine when their child is fit to play. With Player’s Health, parents are empowered to actively manage their child’s medical conditions.”
In addition to spectacular health benefits, streamlined software can create portals of effective communication, promotion, and fund raising.
Fuel My Club is designed to make fundraising a natural extension of a sports organization. Fuel My Club’s free phone app makes fundraising via coupons allows for both immediate tracking and redemption of sales and coupons. The coaches’ management portal tracks the team progress and also provides reminders of goals. Fuel My Club is available with no upfront cost, no collecting cash, no placing orders and no required door-to-door.
In yet another example of technology making the lives of athletic directors easier, Juggul Equipment relieves the enormous headache of maintaining inventory for the expensive equipment investment of any athletic organization. Juggul allows a customer to manage equipment and apparel using barcode tracking. This platform helps to solve the challenges of time-consuming and inefficient tracking, as well as the nuisance of missing equipment.

As the number of participants in high school sports continues to grow…the workload is only projected to increase for athletic directors.

More importantly, this increase represents additional players, parents, fans, coaches and administrators counting on good information to make the sports experience as seamless as possible. As an easy means to incorporate all three of the above platforms in a one-stop shop, the 8to18 athletic dashboard offers those perks and more.

Juggul software and services provides integrated sports registration and scheduling while providing an interactive athletics website.

As partners of Player’s Health, Fuel My Club and Juggul Equipment, these services not only benefit athletic directors, but also provide insight for everyone in an educational sports community. Parents, players, coaches and administrators can combine day-to-day information with an overall vision for the extracurricular and sports activities for their schools.
Empower your athletic department to better serve the needs of your community. More importantly, empower yourselves with the organization and lightened workload that 8to18’s innovative platform can bring.