The athlete concentrates on putting every available advantage to work for a faster time, a better score, a winning edge. Not surprisingly, performance on the playing field goes far beyond the athlete. The design of sports equipment is big business. While nothing takes the place of proper training and conditioning, elite competitors depend on the smallest refinements in equipment to help make a difference in their performance.

ANSYS works with organizations in the sports equipment industry to improve the design and the performance of everything from balls and racquets to skis and bicycles to swimsuits and canoes. Engineering simulation provides a virtual prototyping environment in which a designer can cost-effectively test the performance of equipment under various conditions.


Speedo® applied ANSYS software in developing its LZR RACER® swimsuit, which was used by athletes in the 2008 Olympics and contributed to setting a number of new world swim records.

With an unparalleled breadth of solutions spanning multiple simulation technologies, ANSYS makes it possible to reproduce the complex structural behavior of a given piece of equipment and to consider how it will interact with its surrounding environment, whether it is air or water, hot or cold, natural surface or man-made. Engineering simulation tools can be used to address aerodynamic and hydrodynamic improvements as well as robustness improvement and fatigue resistance.

For example, ball sports, such as soccer, golf and basketball, involve consideration of materials used, the type of playing field and the conditions of the playing area. The combination of these elements requires an accurate reproduction of conditions. Creating the same conditions for hundreds of tests is nearly impossible with physical testing. ANSYS prototyping software allows designers to create the same event as many times as needed to get a fair comparison of performance and obtain an in-depth understanding of how the ball will perform in all sorts of circumstances.

More complex sports equipment, such as skis, snowboards, bicycles and climbing equipment, involves a wide variety of parameters, including the shape and size of athlete using it. Simulation software allows design engineers to investigate and understand the complex interactions between the athlete and his equipment. The concept, geometry, material, and manufacturing processes can be adjusted so that, ultimately, the best and most reliable equipment can be manufactured.

Athletic performance can be analyzed to determine ways in which equipment can be modified and upgraded to improve future performance. ANSYS software can help engineers tweak designs quickly, so that new products can be brought to market more quickly and efficiently.

Engineering simulation solutions from ANSYS have been chosen by winning teams in the last few Olympics in categories such as bobsled, sailing, skiing, rowing and swimming. The unequalled technical depth within each engineering simulation — fluid flow, structural analysis, thermal behavior and electromagnetics — means ANSYS is able to offer best-in-class solutions to sports equipment manufacturers who do not want to compromise performance for cost.

  • Ball sports
  • Clothing & footwear
  • Equipment design
  • Leisure & toys
  • Motor sports
  • Olympic sports
  • Stadium design & construction
  • Water sports
  • Winter sports