Freelap Timing System Review

Posted by Cody Bidlow on

Freelap Timing System

Introduction

The Freelap Timing System is an easy to use sprint timing system that allows athletes to measure their sprinting performance, track progress, increase training intensity, and improve their results.

By knowing how you are performing each day over various sprint distances, you can figure out what type of training you need in order to perform your best.

This article will cover my own experience with Freelap, the various packages that are available, how to use the Freelap, which Freelap package is best for you, and where to buy a Freelap Timing System.

My Experience With Freelap

I have been using the Freelap Timing System for the better part of the last decade, and it has become my most frequently used training tool.

Whether I am timing myself at practice or my athletes, Freelap gives me a way to accurately and conveniently record important training data which can influence my training decisions.

freelap timing system review

Using Freelap helps me track my progress, autoregulate my training, assess whether workloads are appropriate, and give me insight into what aspects of sprinting I need to focus on within my training.

Combined with lifting data such as through the VMaxPro (eNode), collecting data on your sprint training will help you narrow down to what workloads are appropriate, where in the sprint an athlete needs further development, to identify acceleration and deceleration patterns, and to assess readiness and fatigue.

I personally use the Freelap Pro Coach BLE112 system, but have additional Tx Junior Pro timing cones as well as the Freelap e-starter.

Convenience

My favorite quality of the Freelap Timing System, compared to other systems on the market, is the convenience of the system.

You can carry your Freelap in a backpack or the Freelap case, quickly set it up without taking up a bunch of space on the track, you get times sent directly to your phone, and all times are stored online for future reference in their webapp.

If working with multiple athletes, all you need are multiple Freelap chips, and you can run your athletes through by themselves or competing against each other to record their times.

Reliability

The Freelap Timing System is also quite reliable in my experience. On rare occasions I may miss a split, but typically this is due to using the system too close to a cell tower which are commonly placed at high school and college tracks.

Having used the Freelap multiple times per week for multiple years, I can say with confidence that the Freelap Timing System works well, and you can count on it daily to fulfill your timing needs in practice or time trials.

The Freelap Timing System is also very accurate, down to only 2 milliseconds of potential error.

How To Use The Freelap Timing System

The Freelap Timing System is simple and easy to use. 

To turn on the cones, press and hold the power button until the lights blink. Click the power button to set it to your desired setting:

  • Start - This setting will start the timer when you pass the cone, such as the first cone in a 10m or 30m flying sprint.
  • Lap - This setting will record split times, such as the cones in the middle of a flying sprint zone or within a sprint to a specific distance.
  • Finish - This setting will stop the timer, such as your last cone in a 30 meter sprint from blocks or the last cone in a flying sprint.

If using the Freelap Relay Coach BLE, turn the transmitter on with the power button and place it around 3 to 5 meters from the final Freelap cone. Then, open the Freelap app on your phone and select the plus icon at the top to create a new session. Once you hit "start" on the app, it will allow you to connect to the bluetooth of the Relay Coach. You can also go back to a previous session to continue timing for that session, selecting "download" instead of "new" when the prompt on the screen shows up.

If using the Fx BLE chips instead of the Relay Coach BLE transmitter, you follow the same process and place your phone near the last Freelap cone on the track.

Once the cones are placed on the track, the athlete can place an Fx Chip or Fx BLE Chip on their waistband, sprint through a lane adjacent to the cones, and record their times.

If using the Freelap e-Starter, it is most reliable if placed within a meter of the athlete, with a clear line of sight to the Freelap chip on their waist. Make sure their arm is not blocking the chip so it can communicate, such as placing the e-Starter a couple feet back from the starting line, in-line with the athletes' hips.

If using the Tx Touch Pro touch pad to start your sprints, ensure that the Freelap chip is in the middle of the athlete's waist band and the touch pad is placed under the athlete's thumb.

How To Set Up The Freelap For Sprints To A Distance

If you want to time to a specific distance, such as from 0m to 30m using the e-Starter or Tx Touch Pro, you would set the timing cones at the distances you want to measure, plus 80cm (0.8m). This is because the sensor on the cone picks up the signal from the wearable chip at a radius of 80cm.

Say you are timing to 30m and want to see your 10m, 20m, and 30m times. In this case you would place the cones at 10.8m, 20.8m, and 30.8m. Each cone is 10m apart from one another.

How To Set Up The Freelap For Flying Sprints

When timing flying sprints, you do not need to account for the radius of the cone, since we are not timing to a specific distance, and instead just want a time as we cross through a specific distance. The added 80cm radius only applies when we are timing from 0m to a specific distance.

In the event that you are timing 30m flying sprints with cones every 10m, you would place each cone exactly 10m apart from each other. 

What is The Freelap Timing System?

The Freelap Timing System is a timing system that uses Bluetooth transponders to track the performance of athletes. It can be used by coaches, trainers and athletes in many different types of sports including running, swimming and cycling.

The Freelap Timing System allows you to record your split times such as a flying 30 meter sprint, sprint times to a specific distance such as 0 to 60 meters, and sprint times including a your reaction time using the Freelap e-Starter.

Why do I need the Freelap Timing System?

While you do not technically need any type of sports technology, having a timing system can give you crucial insights to your sprint performance so you can ensure you're training in the right way for you to improve.

The Freelap timing system is useful for:

  • Measuring your sprint performance in acceleration training, speed training, speed endurance training, or for conditioning.
  • Assessing your ability to accelerate, reach maximal velocity, or maintain your speed.
  • Assessing your readiness to train.
  • Identifying what part of the race you need to work on.
  • Assessing whether your training program is producing results or not.

Who uses the Freelap System?

The Freelap system is used worldwide by athletes, coaches and sports scientists to improve performance. It has been proven effective in helping people with a wide range of training goals reach their potential.

The Freelap Timing System is great for athletes who train on their own, as sprinting for time helps increase the intensity of training and allows athletes to assess their performance.

The Freelap Timing System is also great for teams, as it allows for the timing of multiple athletes with relative ease.

What items come with the Freelap Timing System?

Depending on which package you order, there are a variety of options for timing your sprints.

Typical Freelap components used by athletes and coaches include:

  • Freelap Tx Junior Pro - The Freelap cones used to record your sprint times.
  • Freelap Fx Chip - Bluetooth chip worn by the athlete to communicate between the Freelap Tx cones and the Freelap Relay Coach bluetooth transmitter.
  • Freelap Fx BLE Chip - Bluetooth chip that communicates between the Freelap cones and your phone, so that you do not need the Freelap Relay Coach
  • Freelap Relay Coach BLE - Communicates between the Freelap cones and your phone, only used if you have the FX Chip and not the FX BLE Chips.
  • Freelap e-Starter - Simulates a starting gun and initiates the timing system so you can improve reaction time, practice starting against a gun, and to track sprint times which include your reaction time.
  • Freelap Tx Touch Pro - A touch pad used to start your sprints, if you want to time sprints to a specific distance but without reacting to a starting gun sound.

Which Freelap Package Is Best For Me?

There are a variety of Freelap packages which you can purchase, depending on your sprinting and timing needs.

Most athletes training on their own will go for either one of the Freelap BT packages, while coaches or larger groups of athletes may prefer the Freelap BLE packages.

The BT packages will communicate directly from the BLE chips to your phone, so you do not need the Relay Coach BLE transmitter. The BLE packages include the non-BLE chips, and uses the Relay Coach BLE to send times to your phone.

freelap timing system

The reason a coach may prefer the BLE system is because this uses the cheaper FX Chips, allowing you to purchase more timing chips for larger groups of athletes.

In contrast, the BT systems tend to be more convenient for athletes training on their own, as you do not need the Relay Coach and can connect the wearable chips directly to your phone.

Freelap BT Packages (uses the FX BLE chips, no Relay Coach):

  • Freelap Pro BT112 - Includes two Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, one Freelap FX BLE Chip, and the option to purchase a Tx Touch Pro.
  • Freelap Pro BT424 - Includes four Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, four Freelap FX BLE Chips, and the option to purchase up to two Tx Touch Pros.
  • Freelap Pro BT824 - Includes four Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, eight Freelap FX BLE Chips, and the option to purchase up to two Tx Touch Pros.

Freelap BLE Packages (uses the FX Chips with the Relay Coach):

  • Freelap Pro BLE112 Includes two Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, one Freelap FX Chip, the Relay Coach BLE transmitter, and the option to purchase a Tx Touch Pro.
  • Freelap Pro BLE424 Includes four Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, four Freelap FX Chips, the Relay Coach BLE transmitter, and the option to purchase up to two Tx Touch Pros.
  • Freelap Pro BLE824 Includes four Freelap Tx Junior Pro timing cones, eight Freelap FX Chips, the Relay Coach BLE transmitter, and the option to purchase up to two Tx Touch Pros.

In addition to the packages, there are also some Freelap Components you should consider purchasing to make the most of your Freelap Timing System.

Additional Freelap Components:

  • Freelap e-Starter - A great alternative to the Tx Touch Pro, the e-Starter will give you a set command and a randomly timed starting gun sound, allowing you to simulate competition conditions, improve reaction time, and develop the skill to start sprints in response to a starting gun. The e-Starter will also ensure your times include reaction time in them, so your results in practice are more relatable to competition times.
  • Freelap LED Display - A 12.5" x 6.25" LED display that will show sprint times, so you can see your results without going back to look at the Freelap App on your phone.

Where can I purchase a Freelap Timing System?

The best place to purchase the Freelap Timing System is through Simplifaster.

Simplifaster offers the best prices and customer service when it comes to Freelap Timing Systems.

They also offer a wide range of cool sports technology products, such as the 1080 Sprint, VMaxPro, and more.

Conclusion

The Freelap Timing System is an accurate and easy to use sports timing system that allows athletes to measure their performance and improve their results. It provides an easy way to monitor the training of athletes during practices, to increase the intensity of training, and to track performance changes over time.

If you are serious about sprint training, then the Freelap Timing System is right for you!


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