Set Your Performance Analysis KPIs
First up, what are KPIs in sports performance analysis?
KPIs are the Key Performance Indicators that a coach can define a performance by, based on the number of either positive or negative outcomes for each event. A coach can then analyse and use these to report back to players or take action on during/after a game or training session.
Setting up relevant and appropriate KPI’s is the first step in effectively using performance analysis software or good old fashioned pen & paper. Too often coaches get caught up in wanting to measure and record every event and outcome statistic in a game — Be honest, as a coach how many do you look at, consider and take action from? Having records of every stat imaginable sounds great in theory but how does it help coaches improve athletes — too much info and your message will get lost.
Similarly as coaches we don’t want to spend ages looking at stats when we should be looking at the game or working with our athletes. So we don’t just want the specifics — we need them.
Our advice is to start by clearly setting out your style of play (strategy) and then list the objectives required to achieve this strategy. From this, choose 6–8 key events that will form your KPIs and that you want to measure throughout the game. Each of those events will have a number of outcomes, for example ‘Attacking Third Entries’ in Soccer is the ‘event’ and that event will have a number of outcomes which can be as simple as 'right, centre, left.'
This approach helps coaches become more objective and tracking only key events helps us reflect appropriately during or following a game. It allows coaches to be specific and objective with feedback at half and full time, as well as, shape behaviour, body language and feedback on the sideline. It also allows coaches to quickly recognise what video footage they should be looking at post game that shows them the 'how and why' of what the stats are telling them (what we call coachable moments).
Performance Analysis software should make improvement easier for coaches and players alike. It should save them time and help them make objective decisions, allowing them to coach better. Identifying what matters and setting up appropriate KPIs that have meaning to you and your athletes is the first and most important step on that Performance Analysis journey.