NSW Institute of Sports takes presence technology to its peak

High tech coaching methods

The NSW Institute of Sport is using IP telephony and presence technology as part of new high tech coaching methods to help 700 athletes across 23 sports reach their peak performance.

To be used at Sydney Olympic Park, the institute's ICT manager, Greg Baxter, said it is about helping athletes prepare for competition.

"Our high tech coaching methods help athletes to reach their peak performance, and for many, that will mean the chance to compete at the Olympics," he said.

In 2006, the NSW Institute of Sport moved its 100 employees into new office space at Sydney Olympic Park.

Most of the employees work at a central administration office, with small teams working in office spaces embedded within the various Olympic Park sporting facilities.

The large campus environment presents significant challenges, both in delivering communications services, and achieving the flexibility required to handle frequent reconfigurations.

The communications system also needs to support the delivery of advanced sports performance analysis and coaching tools, to coaches and athletes in-training.

Baxter said the institute selected a Mitel 3300 ICP solution to handle the communication needs for their entire campus.

He said a single Mitel 3300 unit delivers voice services across the institute's various Olympic Park offices.

Gigabit Ethernet and wireless LAN solutions from HP ProCurve have been deployed as part of the solution.

Fast Ethernet fibre links connect the central office to several sporting facilities at Olympic Park, with Wireless LAN technology allowing employees to easily access centrally stored sports performance data.

The solution has also been completely integrated with Microsoft Live Communications Server, to deliver sophisticated voice and unified messaging services across the campus.

The campus wide solution was designed and installed by integrator Essential Data and Voice.

Baxter looked at voice solutions from five major vendors before selecting Mitel.

"Many of the solutions we considered looked good at first glance, but had ridiculously high ongoing fees," he said.

"Mitel's solution offered us the best value, with reasonable ongoing support costs, and easy to use administration tools."

Helping athletes to improve their performance is of paramount importance to the institute.

Coaching staff are provided with sophisticated data capture and analysis tools.

Instead of disrupting athlete training to analyse performance, coaches bring the technology to the athlete.

Baxter said the Mitel solution makes it easier for coaches to work effectively while they are trackside at the athletics centre, or at other key sporting venues at Olympic Park.

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