Credit: Ilana Wurman

Penn Athletics and its 33 varsity teams will partner with with Sparta Science, a "Silicon Valley company that applies data and technology to the pursuit of human resilience," according to a University announcement this week. 

Sparta Science, based out of Menlo Park, Calif., uses its software platform to give coaches and trainers the ability to measure, and subsequently avoid player injury risk. Monitoring player health and injury potential is measured by a test called the ‘Sparta Scan.’ 

Among all Ivy League universities, Penn will be Sparta's exclusive partner, the statement said. 

Athletes complete a sequence of jumps on a force plate, allowing the Sparta software to collect data and compare it to stored data of “more than 10,000 professional and college athletes over a nine-year span,” the statement said, giving coaches and athletes provenly accurate means to predict injury risks. 

“[Penn's] unique combination of business and medical expertise will help pave the way for broader applications of Sparta technology in healthcare,” Phil Wagner, the founder of Sparta Science, said in the statement. 

According to its website, Sparta Science is partnered with a host of collegiate and professional sports programs, including the Cleveland Cavaliers, Atlanta Falcons, Washington Nationals, and other universities like Ohio State, Auburn and the University of Texas at Austin, among others.

"Sparta allows us to quantify athletic parameters in a reliable and reproducible way, giving us data points to follow student-athletes' performance in a way that's not previously been possible...allowing us...to train to mitigate any risks," Brian J. Sennett, chief of sports medicine and head team physician at Penn Athletics, said in the statement. 

Penn Athletics has previously embraced other technologies focused on measuring athletic performance, including a BodPod managed by a University sports nutritionist and GPS tracking vests for the men's basketball team. The department has also used SpartaTrac, which is made by Sparta Science, for strength training. 

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