Snowboards and smartphones

Push Snowboarding and Burton are attempting to redefine competitive snowboarding with a run analysis system built around the Nokia N8 smartphone…

Push has extended the deadline for entries to this competition until Wednesday, February 23, so move quickly if you want to take part.

Nokia tech initiative Push Snowboarding has recently made public a batch of data culled from recordings of snowboarding runs made in Laax, Switzerland.

The records of runs by Burton pro-riders Joachim Krogstie, Tor Lundstrom, Kim Rune Hansen and snowboarding legend Terje Haakonsen were captured using a sensor system which communicates with the Nokia N8 using Bluetooth.

The system records five sets of data from snowboarders using both external sensors (attached to skiwear and the snowboards themselves) and the GPS and accelerometer in the phone.

Measured during each run are orientation, altitude, downward pressure (of the snowboarder’s heel and toe), heart rate, speed and ‘galvanic skin response’, or ‘rush’, which, as far as we can make out, measures how much sweat is being pumped out at any one time.

That will probably all make more sense once you’ve seen it in action, so here’s a video of the pros at work.

Nokia, and Hyper, the agency behind Push, have made the data  open source and are inviting creatives to interpret this in whatever form they like. They’ve also made videos that accompany each run available to aid with data visualisation. And for anyone interested in how the technology works, all that’s available for free too.

And, for any snowfiends amongst you, they’ve agreed to give one lucky CR reader a trip for two to this year’s Burton US Open, taking place at Stratton Mountain, Vermont, 9-12 March. This includes both flights and accomodation, as well as passes for the main events at the Open.

For a chance to win, you’ll need to submit your own creative interpretation of one of the data sets by Monday 21 February to

The winner, as judged by the CR editorial team, will be announced by the end of the week.

If you’re thinking of entering, the riders’ data can be downloaded here.