October 20, 2015

Performance Analysis: the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ of Analysis

Written by:
James Molyneux

The ‘WHY’ and the ‘HOW’ of Analysis

At the end of my previous blog, I asked the questions… why do you want to use analysis? And, what do you want to get out of it?

Asking ‘WHY’ is extremely important, if you don’t understand why you’re doing something then why do it at all? The ‘WHY’ is important to doing analysis for the right reasons and aligning your views with your coaching philosophy.

If you’re doing it for the wrong reasons i.e. a company has advertised how great their product is, you’re barking up the wrong tree. I’m not suggesting you shouldn’t use it or that some software isn’t worth the money. Simply if you understand the ‘why’ I feel you’ll reap more of the benefits from your work.

Now ‘HOW’ a do you go about it?

Filming is the first step, good quality footage is vitally important! Find a spot with elevation, in view of the the whole pitch and you can’t go far wrong.

There isn’t a gold standard when it comes to the of ‘how’ of analysis. It’s all about producing relevant information to how you coach. Too often you see analysts using generic performance indicators to break up game footage, although these can be useful to start with this isn’t analysis, it is video editing.

You need to know what’s important to your team, once you know this you can start measuring it. I urge you to think properly about this, what is it that will indicate how you’re performing? Sorry if you were expecting a specific answer, but this is what makes analysis so brilliant, you can measure anything and make it bespoke to your needs.

In the same breath, it is very easy to want to measure and know everything, but if it does not add value, do not do it! Its always good to start small and organically grow rather than having to having to search through lots of information to find value.

There are a variety of tools/ software you can use to do this. Not one is better than another it’s about finding something that works for you. This could range from a spreadsheet to a sophisticated code window, as long as it works for you then brilliant! Some of my best initial work involved simple arrows and colours on a pitch map, something simple but incredibly powerful because it added value to the coach.

I encourage you be innovative in the way you take on your analysis. Push the boundaries but don’t forget about the goal post (your ‘why’). Once you understand the WHY and planned your HOW you can begin to decide WHAT you are going to deliver.

So ‘WHAT’ effect do you want your analysis to have?

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