Olympic ski jumper Ryōyū Kobayashi’s team harnessed Movella’s Xsens high-quality 3D motion tracking technology in the athlete’s training leading to both Gold and Silver medals at the 2022 Winter Olympics. 

Professors Keizo Yamamoto of Hokusho University and Makoto Tsubokuraabout of Kobe University/RIKEN work closely with athletes at the National Training Center (NTC) in Sapporo, Japan. Understanding the importance of movement analysis, the professors implemented Xsens motion capture technology in their research in the lead up to the 2022 Winter Olympics. The research involved ski-jumper Ryōyū Kobayashi donning an Xsens MVN Link for a trial jump, which was translated into a 3D rendering for analysis. The findings from this research proved illuminating, with to data-driven changes in technique that , lead to Ryōyū Kobayashi picking up one silver and one gold medal in the men’s normal hill individual ski jumping final.  

With Xsens motion capture technology, Professor Yamamoto and Professor Tsubokuraabout were able visaizlise the invisible airflow and aerodynamic forces, which made it much easier for them to present data to Ryōyū Kobayashi. The Xsens MVN Link suit worn by Ryōyū Kobayashi in the trial jump was chosen by Professor Yamamoto and Professor Tsubokuraabout for its robustness and close proximity to a ski-jumpers suit, which allowed Kobayashi to perform in his natural state. 

“Ski jumping is a flying sport. Therefore, it is essential to analyze aerodynamic characteristics in order to evaluate performance. With Xsens motion capture technology, we were able to visualise the invisible airflow and aerodynamic forces, it is possible to explain the data much easier to the athletes. I believe that this will facilitate communication between athletes and coaches and improve the quality of training.” – Professor Makoto Tsubokuraabout, Kobe University/RIKEN

We considered various manufacturers, and then chose Xsens MVN for the reason that it can accurately measure the posture of the jumper and the ski boards. Athletes must wear the device and jump – so high, that we refer to it as flying! We needed a system that is as light in weight and small in size as possible. Xsens met all these requirements.” – Professor Keizo Yamamoto, Hokusho University.

Since launching in 2000, Movella’s Xsens motion capture technology has been used globally by athletes and coaches who are seeking high-quality 3D motion tracking technology to analyze performance data. Motion capture technology has opened up a new way of thinking about the movement for coaches and athletes. Software such as MVN Analyze is giving top-level coaches and athletes the ability to not only analyze how they should move but why they move the way they do. 

“At Movella, we’ve seen more and more athletes and coaches turning to Xsens mocap solutions when looking for a way to not only analyze movement but understand it at a deeper level. The ability to visualize movement data helps coaches better understand the capabilities and restrictions of their athletes. This in turn allows athletes to maximise their strengths, and take their performance to the next level – as we’ve seen with Ryōyū Kobayashi at the 2022 Winter Olympics. Kobayashi’s victories in the Olympics prove that there is immense value in having access to an unbias, data-driven interpretation of movement, that only motion capture can provide.” – Rob Löring, Senior Director Business Unit Entertainment & PL 3DBMSenior at Movella and Xsens