Gatorade, a company that offers sports drinks for athletes to keep them hydrated, has developed a sweat patch that will help them refuel more effectively, providing them with an extra edge on the field.
The wearable sweat patch can be worn by athletes during practice or workouts to help them track hydration and nutrients they’ve lost through perspiration, reports Inc.
Users stick the three-inch-long patch to their forearm, and built-in sensors measure how much they sweat and how much sodium they lose during their workout. That info is relayed to Gatorade’s GX app, which then offers advice on how to refuel–with Gatorade, naturally.
This is a key part of the company’s plans for providing athletes with access to comprehensive information about their performance, according to Xavi Cortadellas, Gatorade’s head of innovation and design.
Gatorade, which is owned by PepsiCo, isn’t the first sports company to make a foray into wearables. Companies like Under Armour, Nike and Adidas have already dipped their toes in the wearable space.
At the Gatorade Sports Science Institute in Florida, the company tests out new product ideas and analyzes performance data in real time.
The facility is visited by professional athletes every day. They are asked to play and sweat and do all the things fit people usually do. Doctors and scientists at Gatorade then investigate their performance. The participants are hooked up to large, expensive machines that track energy intake, sweat rate, even a person’s fat, and muscle mass, to understand what’s happening at a molecular level. With this, the company is able to understand what products work and what products don’t–as well as understand how different athletes’ bodies respond to different conditions.
“Sports science is complex, and athletes want it simplified and want more actionable input,” says Cortadellas. “We want to be the translators of this complexity to everyday athletes.”