Sport Ireland hosted its first Technology and Innovation Summit yesterday and it was a clear winner for the 400 delegates who attended at the National Indoor Arena.

Padraig Harrington was the keynote guest speaker and had unsurprisingly done a heck of a lot of homework on his presentation on how technology had worked for him through his career.

Anyone who has seen him line up a putt will recognise that the detail and the small elements were important so we learned about the best piece of technology for him in the early days was a $300 jump mat which is still going strong, though his peak of 41 cm would now be admittedly closer to 30.

Not all numbers go down as your age goes up though and he shared how a focus on his swing and measurement of his ball speed, largely using Trackman technology had increased from 169 kilometres per hour at the age of 30 to 192 now at the age of 52.

He paid tribute to Liam Hennessy for much of the guidance through knowing what tech to use and was proud of the fact that he was an early adopter of much of the tech that is now in common use among professionals.

There was much scribbling of notes as he spoke of the importance of recognising that while perfect might be your aspiration, that good enough was itself perfect for most situations.

He spoke of the importance of benchmarks and competing against your own previous best to improve.

he talked about having had four laser eye surgeries, so far, in the pursuit of what would improve his game and of wearing a heart monitor continually for two years to learn about his body. Takeaways were that if he ate red meat his bpm would rise by 10 during his sleep and if he drank alcohol that number would be up by 20.

To the likely frustration of those keeping the schedule on track he overran his time slot by half an hour but MC Joanne Murphy and the team were able to read the room which would have given him leeway for twice that.

He was open and honest, warm and funny and it was a super segment to have been there for.

There was a panel discussion on the importance of research and innovation featuring leading academics keen to get involved in such an important part of the innovation equation, another on indigenous enterprise and the importance of looking to the companies based in ireland that are providing service to some of the leading sports teams in the world but who have barely been heard of in their own backyard.

Sarah keane of Swim ireland, John Feehan of Basketball Ireland, Scott Walker of the IRFU and Aisling Hubbard representing Local Sports Partnerships spoke with Nora Stapleton about their own perspectives on sourcing and implementing tech solutions to sporting challenges.

Darragh O’Grady and Gráinne Barry of Stats Perform as well as Tina Stokes of Whoop gave the perspective of major international companies setting up European bases in Ireland and how ireland was a real hotbed of sports tech excellence.

Inigo Bonilla of the Global Sports Innovation Centre gave us a whistle stop tour of many of the innovations taking place across global sport and I had the pleasure of interviewing Merit Clocquet of Sports Innovator in the Netherland about what a best in class enabler and nurturer of sports tech solutions looks like.

The mark of any good networking event is that it feels like you want to come back for more and that was ceretainly the feeling leaving the Campus yesterday.

The challenge now is to capture that enthusiasm and channel it into a number of solutions that can be brought back to the conference in 12 months time as examples of what is possible.