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5 Questions to Ask Your GPS from the Field and from the Stream

For many, GPS has long been the domain of science geeks and research departments, more commonly used to track migratory birds than wayward players. But GPS is being integrated into sports and recreation as a way to improve training and performance.

1. Ask Your GPS: How Far?

GPS units are excellent tools for calculating distance. This includes distance in a straight line or in any kind of squiggle you can imagine. The applications here are almost endless, from the obvious ideas of tracking how far you run, bike, hike or ride to the more creative use of calculating how far you threw the ball or how long your drive was on the golf course. The benefit of a GPS unit is that the measurements can be quite accurate and it doesn t matter what kind of terrain you are on. Even if you didn t go in a straight line, a GPS unit can still give you an accurate measurement of how far you went.

2. Ask Your GPS: How Fast?

Just as a GPS unit can track how far you went, it can also track how fast you did it. And you can even break down the information into an average speed or calculate exact speeds during short segments. Any sport that involves speed can benefit from GPS units in tracking performance.

3. Ask Your GPS: Where Did It Go?

If you need to know the trajectory of your ball or just keep track of where you went, GPS units are the perfect solution. They are designed specifically to track where you are going and what paths you take to get there. They are also great for determining direction. These functions are most useful for outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, hunting or geocaching since you cover a lot of terrain and often don t travel in straight lines.

4. Ask Your GPS: Where Was It?

Having a GPS unit handy can also be a real benefit for tracking and marking important locations. This feature is useful for hunting and fishing since you can mark areas where game is commonly found so you can find it again easily. But it can also be useful for identifying discoveries you make, scenic views you find or good trails you stumble upon.
Another important benefit of GPS units is tracking your own location in case you are in an accident. This is extremely important in outdoor recreation. GPS beacons can help rescuers find people who are lost in the wilderness, buried in an avalanche or stranded at sea.

5. Ask Your GPS: What s the Weather Like?

Besides the general information regarding location and direction, many GPS units also come with the ability to display other information. Some can receive weather reports, display the current lunar cycle, identify the exact times for sunrise and sunset and even give simple information about landmarks. The most specialized GPS units even include fishfinder technology to aid in fishing.

No matter what you do in your spare time, GPS systems can help you enjoy it more. To see which GPS units will improve your sports experience the most, check out our review of Navigational GPS and Recreational GPS units, including expert and user reviews from across the Internet.

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