Travel is an almost unavoidable part of professional sports. Unfortunately, aeroplane interiors don’t tend to be configured to handle the sometimes odd proportions and unique needs of professional athletes.
Fatigue caused by a heavy travel schedule contributes not only to the well-known “home field advantage,” but also to increased likelihood of injuries.
In an attempt to address this problem, award winning Seattle-based design firm Teague teamed up with Nike to create what they call the “Athlete’s Plane.”
“Air travel often hinders athletic performance due to the impact on physical, physiological and cognitive functions,” said Teague creative director Philipp Steiner. “When professional athletes travel across multiple time zones their team is statistically more likely to lose — the Athlete’s Plane essentially levels the playing field.”
The designers at Teague and Nike focused their concept on four key areas where they believe current commercial charters fail to provide adequately for athletes.
The first area is “recovery,” or as Teague puts it, “equalizing the negative effects of air travel on the mind and body, and bringing the training room to 40,000 feet through in-flight biometrics and analysis to accelerate injury diagnosis and treatment.”
The next two areas are sleep and optimal blood circulation, both of which expedite healing after competition.
Finally the Nike-themed interior will “create spaces for key mental activities, especially film study — enabling in-transit film review both before and after games.”
For now, the Athlete’s Plane is simply a design study. However, in the hypercompetitive world of professional sports, there’s no telling what an ambitious sports team owner might be willing to do for that extra edge.
So the Athlete’s Plane could become a reality.
Have a closer look at the Teague/Nike Athlete’s Plane:
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