“Faster, higher, further” has been an undisputed slogan of the Olympic games, and therefore of top-level world sports, for generations. And obviously, new world records and best times are constantly broken. However, the unabated rush for records is gradually subsiding, because it seems that the limits of human efficiency have been reached in most sectors. On the other hand, men and materials are being improved through closer and closer cooperation between top-level scientific research and competitive sports.
Faster, higher, further is the second episode of the two-part series Sport im 21, which focuses on the connection between sports and science to show how research can optimize results, can improve performance in competitive sports, and what developments can be expected for the near future. The episode describes the growing importance of materials in competitive sports; examples include high-speed skating. The discussion also addresses competitive sports for the disabled, a domain subject to widespread disputes on whether disabled sportspeople wearing high-tech prostheses should also compete against able ones. It finally explains why ongoing computer progress has provided, first and foremost, a strong impulse to the development of measurement and simulation techniques, more of which are expected for the future with the optimization of equipment, apparel, and techniques.