If companies want virtual reality (VR) to appeal to a mainstream audience then utilising sports teams is probably a good way to start. Finding out that your favourite NFL team is using VR for training purposes will surely spark an interest in many a tech savvy fans mind, and now the Minnesota Vikings have announced a partnership with STRIVR Labs.
STRIVR Labs provide instructional VR technology to help players train using Oculus Rift head-mounted displays (HMD). In an article by FutureSport, Derek Belch, founder of STRIVR Labs said: “I think first and foremost it’s just awesome to see any team, but especially the Vikings be at the forefront of doing something like this. As far as what it can do, we’re looking at literally taking the practice experience and bringing it off the practice field. I’m in no way, shape or form ever going to denounce the importance of physical reps, but the reality is NFL teams are increasingly limited in the amount of time they’re able to spend on the field, and we’re giving these guys a chance to simulate, just like they’re there.”
Rick Spielman, General Manager at the Minnesota Vikings said: “We are constantly looking for opportunities to help our players prepare and improve on the field. This is just another example of the Wilf family’s commitment to helping our team compete for championships.”
The Vikings aren’t the first to implement VR technology in the NFL, with VRFocus previously reporting on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers using a similar system and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell trying out VR at Stanford University.
VRFocus will continue to follow the latest announcements regarding VR in the world of sport.