Allowing surf coaches and their participants to use virtual reality (VR) to overcome the traditional hurdles of the sports training environment has won a team of Griffith Sciences students at the Ompantek Industry Awards.
The awards recognize industry collaboration and each nominated project worked with real clients, in this case Surfing Australia’s High Performance Center and Griffith’s Ideas Lab.
VR Wave team members Jake Ballard, Matthew Faust, Francesco Mennella, Mauro Oliveri, Dominic Rochin and Christopher Wood, who study computer science and information technology at Griffith, were praised for their achievements and innovative thinking.
“Our team was tasked with overcoming two issues that surf coaches face: unpredictable surfing conditions and the limitations of traditional coaching methods,” Dominic said.
“To overcome these problems, the goal of the project was to create a virtual reality wave selection tool designed to improve surfers’ wave identification and selection skills.”
The selection of waves is crucial as it has a significant impact on the score that surfers can expect during the competition. Traditional training methods do not allow for instant feedback (since the surfer is in the water), which can limit the ease of use and translation of comments into improved performance.
To solve this problem, the VR Wave team created a virtual reality surfing simulation that allows for better coaching communication to improve surfers ’wave selection.
The team of six received $ 2,500 for their victory.
The jury for the awards included Ompantek president and chairman Danny Maher, Gold Coast Innovation Hub CEO Sharon Hunneybell, Australian Computer Society Queensland Branch executive committee member Sharon Singh, and the head of the Griffith School of Information and Communication Technology, Paulo de Souza.
“It’s as good to see the talent of all students flourish when they go to work with the industry, working on hands-on projects exactly as they would in the workforce,” Souza’s professor said.
Professor Souza also thanked the award sponsor, Opmantek.
The Opmantek Industry Awards are organized by Griffith, in collaboration with Opmantek. Opmantek is a multi-award winning software company operating in the field of intelligent network management and IT audit software.