General knowledge of the use of technology is important in this era. Everyone is talking about the technology and the 4.0 industry revolution (IR 4.0) that is happening around us. Similarly, sports, technology applications, and IR4.0 have begun to be implemented. Nevertheless, it needs to be scrutinised so that the use of technology and IR 4.0 does not become detrimental to future generations.

Let’s reflect on the disadvantages of using technology in sports. The most recent issue is when FIFA does not allow the use of technology on goal posts to track the ball’s position in or out. The reason given by FIFA is that it is an art that needs to be protected because technology will cause a sport to be rigid and unnatural. For this reason, until now, no sensors have been allowed to be installed on the crossbar of the football goal post and the football itself. The decision of the ball into the goal post is determined only through the referee’s discretion.

Recently, E-sports has been promoted as a significant activity that needs to be given attention and even organized in the Philippine SEA Games. We can observe how our teenagers would gather in groups to play video games while eating dinner, and E-sports are something they enjoy playing around the clock. However, in 2010, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) expressed concern over technology’s impact on cognitive and social development. No more healthy interactions occur when the eyes are only focused on the screen. In addition, it also has the potential to interfere with sleep: unhealthy sleep can lead to stress and mental health disorders.

Accordingly, referring to the definition of sport in Wikipedia, the sport consists typically of physical activities performed for various purposes such as competition, fun, development, skills, and excellence. This difference distinguishes the nature of a sport. For example, swimming in front of thousands of spectators would be a sport, but swimming alone in a pool or sea is a recreational activity. To understand the sport, we need to know that it involves physical activity. To date, technology causes no movement of motor behavior during sports. Physical activity will result in the production of the hormones endorphin and serotonin. Without the direction of motor behavior, this hormone will not be produced, thus reducing the risk of physical and mental health.

The application of sports technology and IR 4.0 is undeniably beneficial, especially in judging and analyzing performance. The data obtained is high validity and reliability. For example, replays in rugby and tennis will help referees make fair and accurate decisions. It is excellent for achieving satisfaction for both parties and the audience. In addition, it also helps coaches analyze opponents’ weaknesses through video analysis that uses sports technology applications. Countries like the United States have already used Artificial Intelligence in basketball. They can identify the appropriate tactics and techniques to win in a competition through the help of sports technology.

The other benefits obtained through e-sports are hand-eye coordination training and psychology training. E-sports train our brains to make the right decisions in a short time. If they fail, they will lose the game. Any opponent who makes the right decision will top the current rankings regardless of physical ability. E-sports also help train a quick response to the brain and hands/feet to perform a movement. A simple example in a life application is when about to fall or collide; a victim who has a quick response has a high percentage of potential to reduce the risk of an accident. E-sports can be applied to all sports to train the brain to be healthier and brighter.

Sports can be practiced till old age without restriction, thanks to the advantages of sports technology. Once you reach your forties, sports won’t stop. Sports technology can help identify the major causes of injuries and recommend the proper techniques and motions to reduce the likelihood of an injury while playing a sport. Various types of sports can still be played at age 40, such as e-sports, golf, petanque, woodball, darts, chess, and others. Most people think sports require a solid and fit body, which is no longer valid. Various types of sports such as golf, cycling, running, and rowing have been conducted virtually using 3D simulations to increase people’s motivation to love sports and continue to exercise despite being busy working.

Sports are not only for the athletes; the general community can also explore this field without limitations and obstacles if they have a deep interest and effort. Recently, knowledge in the field of sports science and sports technology can be accessed easily by all parties through sports associations, sports councils, youth ministries and other sports bodies. Sports activities can be managed and conducted by outsiders not just for profit and personal satisfaction but for various reasons.

Islam has long emphasized the importance of balance in life. Do not exaggerate. Pursuing success in sports and life can only be achieved through a balanced approach. Sports 4.0, the application of sports technology and IR4.0, must be carried out equally without ignoring the importance and priority of sports, which squeeze physical sweat and tears to achieve success. In sports, budget, prize and effort must be equivalent to physical and mental activity. The use of sports technology will undoubtedly bring 1001 benefits to the success of sports in Malaysia, but if it is implemented excessively, it will also harm us. Thus, with wisdom, we explore.

Ts Dr Hadafi Fitri Mohd Latip
Director of SITC, iHumEn, and
Senior Lecturer of SBEHS, FE, UTM