Lions thrilled with Analysis Pro!

02 February 2021

Head Coach Stuart Littler reviews the impact of the club’s new performance analysis tools.

At Swinton Lions, we chose to partner with AnalysisPro to supply the club’s performance analysis tools in preparation for the upcoming 2021 season!

We are a part-time professional Championship Rugby League club, so we have to ensure we operate within sensible budgets, but also meet specific time frames regarding accessibility to players due to their work commitments and the balance of everyday family life. 2020 was of course an exceptional year, and one in which the season was cancelled for the first time in our lifetimes.

I have personally used the Nacsport video analysis software in collaboration with AnalysisPro to assist with coaching strategies throughout my time at Swinton as Head Coach. I have found Nacsport to be a leading performer in the video analysis field.

At the end of every season our Performance Staff sit down to review what has gone well, but to also ask the question, “How can we be even better?”

That review is structured so that each department within our performance team gets the opportunity to study the impact from tailored strategies, but also gets the opportunity to suggest how we can make things better. As a club, we are constantly assessing where we are at, but also how we can improve things to make Swinton the best learning environment and the most professional organisation it can be.

Within our latest annual review, our performance team highlighted that our performance analysis tools could be more efficient and effective – hence our decision to partner with AnalysisPro. In this release, I will discuss our intentions for each of the performance tools, and later in the year I will provide an update to discuss specifics within our performance analysis system and its impact upon the team’s performance.

I’d also like to stress that we had the full support of our Board at Swinton, together with the Supporters’ Trust, to acquire our new tools.

First up, we purchased two additional Nacsport Basic licences that are intended for use by my assistant coach Allan Coleman and our lead analyst Chris Wharton. By moving us all to the Nacsport platform, our video analysis will run from the same systems, making it easier for players to understand, whilst also making video sharing and editing between staff easier to complete. When analysing any video or forming new structures/specifics, we try to make things as simple as possible to promote clarity and understanding within our group. Nacsport now allows us to complete all our individual reviews, all the team previews and reviews, as well as allowing the coaching team to utilise videos that support the understanding of any given role within our team. More Nacsport licences have also given us more eyes in forming game plans and assessing opposition structures. The more ideas and discussion points we can formulate, the better our detail when given to our playing staff in supporting upcoming performances. We have found Nacsport to be a leading performer within this sector.

As well as access to Nacsport, I also had a play around pre-lockdown with the KlipDraw Animate tool, which integrates with Nacsport and allows us to draw or highlight specific areas within our video analysis, to improve the understanding of the processes involved in any targeted area of performance. KlipDraw was available for a trial period, so I utilised the offer and found that the support videos were great in getting up to speed with best practice to optimise performance. After this trial period, we decided that our videos would have greater impact with this tool, as well as allowing us to highlight specific scenarios that again promoted greater understanding within our playing group.

Lastly on the video analysis side, we had previously emailed individual information out, and team previews and reviews were completed in meeting rooms at our training venues. Again, with Covid related implications as well as our player accessibility, we wanted to create a classroom that was available to our players 24/7, as all our players have varying work schedules. By linking with the Sharimg platform, we have transferred our Video Learning Room to a cloud area, which enables our players to have 24/7 access to video reviews, previews of both game days, but also to training scenarios and discussion points. By using the Sharimg platform, we are ensuring our footage is easily accessible to our players who can access it from their phones, tablets or computers and smart TV’s.

Away from the video analysis, discussions between our Head Coach and Lead Strength & Conditioner led to the suggestion that some GPS performance systems would support the ‘challenge aspect’ within our team dynamics in training, but it would also give us a performance tool that could be used to gain access to hard data, including kilometres covered, impacts, sprints, hard running efforts as well as top speeds throughout individual and team performances. We therefore chose the SPT GPS system from AnalysisPro to answer this requirement.

SPT has been very useful for us to support data driven decision making, which supports our wellbeing screens, testing and the coaching team’s opinions. The SPT Gametraka platform allows us to share this data with the team as soon as it’s uploaded. This data is freely available to our players across all devices and in turn has generated some further competition elements within our squad. We are looking forward to utilising the tools in games at the start of the upcoming season. This data will allow us to be proactive rather than reactive in our decision-making process on individual players, but also on team decisions when aiming to periodise training schedules to optimise our team’s performance levels throughout 2021.

As a performance team, we are delighted with the current impact from all the new tools we have purchased from AnalysisPro. The support from all the partners involved is second to none and any minor issues have been cleared up with both speed and efficiency. We will be in touch later in the year to evaluate the impacts of each of our analysis tools, as we expect each to improve player interactions as the season draws closer.

 

Stuart Littler, Swinton Lions Head Coach.

 

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