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“Sports Without Borders” to use SMARTSPEED technology to test kids at North Melbourne Football Club’s Family Day.

This year’s popular North Melbourne Football Club’s annual Family Community Day next Saturday February 13 for the first time will be adding leading edge sport science technology to its usual programme of children’s Rides, Multicultural entertainment shows, henna painting, an animal farm – and of course having your photograph taken with your favourite football player. 

This year kids of all ages will be able to test their physical potential for all sports, their agility and fitness under the watchful eye of a team of University sport scientists, using an Australian developed, world first, wireless, computer controlled Training, Coaching and Testing System called SMARTSPEED™ (www.fusionsport.com)

·      When: Saturday, 13 February 2010 10am onwards to 2pm (main stage presentation will run between 1-2pm)         

·      Where: North Melbourne Football Club’s new facility at Arden Street Oval 204 Arden Street, North Melbourne

(MEDIA CONTACTS AT THE GROUND WILL BE ANDREA FORBES FUSION SPORT ON 0417 711 735  OR  Anne King  Sports Without Borders  0447 448 477

FOR MUCH MORE TECHNICAL DETAIL CONTACT DR. MARKUS DEUTSCH 0423 837 410; PR TERRY QUINN 0439 710 418; FRANK DOWNES CEO GRABBA INTERNATIONAL 0412 069 500)

Smartspeed™ is the revolutionary flagship product of Australia’s Fusion Sport, a subsidiary of Brisbane based electronics exporter Grabba International. Fusion Sport specialises in applying Sports Science to developing education and technology products for a wide range of sports under the SmartSpeed brand now used around the world. Designed by leading Australian sports scientists and engineers led by Dr. Markus Deutsch, SmartSpeed uses state of the art wireless mobile computer technologies to enhance sports training and performance by providing fast feedback and challenges.

“Today the system is in use byover 100 Universities, 20 Research Institutes, 20 Institutes of Sport, 5 Olympic Committees, over 30 of the top professional football teams in western Europe and the UK, more than 10 international Rugby Teams plus many of the teams in the AFL, NRL, ARU, NZRU in Australia and New Zealand, Dr, Deutsch said today. (See more detail at www.fusionsport.com )

On Saturday Fusion Sport was invited to demonstrate its technolopgy by “Youth Action”, an ititiative of Sports Without Borders - described by organisers as “a grass roots program aimed at underprivileged schools and community centres focussing on the multicultural youth population.”

According to as spokesperson from Sports Without Borders, Youth Action will run the SMARTSPEED partcipation trials between 10.00 a.m. - 1.00 p.m.  “We have chosen North Melbourne’s Family Day because of their new HiTech Learning and Life Centre which is state of the art, supported by the Australian Multicultural Foundation and the Victorian Multicultural Commission. North Melbourne's new recruit Majak, was a Sports Without Borders scholarship holder and is an Ambassador for SWB. We will also have two North Melbourne players engaging in the SMARTSPEED program on the day. Sports Without Borders is partnered with the Australian Multicultural Foundation and the Victorian Multicultural Commission.

“This latest project with Sports Without Borders is part of a growing initiative by Fusion Sport to apply its athlete training technology to building excitement around physical activity in Australia’s youth. Whilst the Fusion Sport product suite is already in use by many schools for sports training, testing, athletics carnivals and physical education, the combination of Fusion’s technologies represents an ‘out of the box’ solution for challenging, measuring and reporting on the health and fitness of school children. This solution is now being used by leading groups such as Monash and Victoria Universities to perform research and education in this crucial area of health science.”

Grabba Internation CEO Frank Downes said “Fusion Sport recently expanded its global distribution with the addition of 10 new Distributors of their SmartSpeed timing and athlete development system to Greece, Turkey, Portugal,  Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Korea, Italy, Canada and the USA.  These 10 were in addition to distributors already in place in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Spain, France, Belgium, The Netherlands, South Africa, Dubai and Singapore. Over 80% of Fusion Sport sales are to customers outside of Australia.

“Following the merger with Grabba International in January 2008 the Fusion Sport SmartSpeed System has become even more advanced with the addition of a number of technology enhancements that became possible after the Grabba Engineering Team took on the task of Research & Development for the product. The addition of features such as use of RFID technology to identify athletes to the system to speed up testing, camera control and file management for capture of individual performance using such programs as Dartfish (tm) and other custom programs, and of other performance measurement accessories has led to a rapid expansion in sales of the entire SmartSpeed suite,” Mr. Downes said.

SMARTSPEED™  enhances athlete training, testing or research environments on a daily basis - from basic wireless timing to advanced tactical drills involving 30-40 athletes.

The system can be used to train and assess critical aspects of sports performance in all land-based sports - speed, endurance, race-pacing, reaction time and decision making. It gives coaches greater control over the training environment, and provides a new world of challenges and instant feedback for athletes.

During 2009 Grabba initiated research into the efficacy of the Fusion Sport SmartSpeed System in a K-12 school in Brisbane.  The research was carried out to provide constructive evidence to support the belief that the SmartSpeed system could be presented as a highly accurate and repeatable method for assessing any programs that may be introduced in the schools of the world to combat the burgeoning issue of childhood obesity – a  very real problem in the Western World and a problem that Governmants will be throwing a lot of money at.  (Refer Michelle Obama announcement of US$10 Billion programme to combat childhood obesity.)

Grabba International Pty Ltd

Grabba International Pty Ltd is a closely-held private corporation dedicated to developing, manufacturing and marketing globally a range of tools that empower business users to utilize the computing power available in a wide range of PDA and Smart Phone hand held devices for applications requiring enterprise mobility. Grabba International headquarters are at 2 Henley Street, Coopers Plains, Qld 4108, Australia