Monthly Archives: June 2011
Today, I’m starting a new feature on the blog featuring some of the football books I would have on my featured reading list for fellow coaches.
My first choice is probably a controversial one as the feeling towards this book’s author following his time coaching with England is somewhat tainted in coaching circles however I would disagree with that train of thought in many respects anway.
‘Sven Goran Eriksson on Football’ is without doubt, a fantastic read for any coach and an wonderful insight into the world of european club management. Written along with Norwegian Sports Psychologist Willi Railo, Sven analyses the key physical and pychological aspects of his successful managerial reigns at S.S. Lazio
It’s certainly worth giving a read regardless of whatever pre-conceptions you may hold of the author.
I should say from the offset that I am by no means an expert in the area of using video analysis in football coaching; in fact I am the complete opposite, more a student of the art.
I’ve been editing football footage for over a year now and have used a number of my edited pieces in presentations and for learning resources to varying degrees of success although almost all have thankfully been positively received. It is a relatively easy process, to become capable at editing & cutting video clips. It is, however, the fine art of analysing footage correctly that takes far more time to develop. Tagging games is one such element of the fine art of video analysis and is essentially the process of placing virtual bookmarks on the areas of the game that you wish to highlight, edit and use in your videos/presentations.
In my very early days of video analysis I tended to tag games very simply, focusing on key incidents areas such as corners for/against, free kicks for/against, shots on goal etc and for starting out this was perfect. It allowed me to edit the clips quickly and have them ready for use quickly for presentation purposes. Nowadays though I see much more scope in what should be analysed.
While the requirement still is to have clips available as soon as possible after a game or as quickly as the footage is filmed, the extra time spent by a coach looking at other key aspects of the game such as the ‘transition from defence to attack & vice versa’, team shape, positioning of goalkeepers, organisation of key areas of the field etc is invaluable. Often what you analyse can provoke some interesting debate amongst coaching staff and amongst players if shared with them and this can be where real positive football learning occurs.
An aspect of video analysis I am finding more and more beneficial is the analysis of training sessions particularly as I work a lot with underage elite female goalkeepers in small groups. For example, in a game that we may film, our goalkeepers might have little to do and the video analysis of the game can often provide little for discussion – in training however, you are guaranteed a specific number of repetitions of skills, be that handling, dealing with crosses, positioning etc. Each sequence of video provides an opportunity to analyse key movements in great detail which can (but not always) get over looked during a session where the coach is dealing with serving balls to players etc. Invariably with younger players there will always be areas for improvement and this process captures these moments in the safe environment of the training field.
I usually take the footage away following the training session; analyse & edit the clips, picking out examples of good technique & areas for improvement. Later on, the players and I will usually sit and go through the footage together. The clips are always arranged in a ‘sandwich’ formation which I feel works best for delivering feedback i.e. good examples – areas for improvement – good examples again. We spend no more than 15 minutes or so usually going through the clips and having a general discussion around it.
I cannot state how beneficial this process has been for both me as a coach and for the players and it is something that could be done very simply by anyone interested in this sort of thing. Even without fancy tagging & editing software or production of movie style clips, you can always video a goalkeeper session with a camcorder for example and play it back on a TV for discussion.
I would strongly advise however that you always ask permission from the players to video (and of course their parents if they are underage) in advance and that the coach watches the session a number of times first before ever presenting it to players. Firstly to determine what he/she hopes to achieve from showing the clips and secondly to ensure that coaching points to be made are correct.
Just like out the field when showing technique to players, analysing it incorrectly can have long lasting detrimental effects on the players so please do take the time to be studious with your footage. It’s not for all coaches though, some don’t like the use of video analysis and you may well be one of them. My advice, only do it if you truly believe in its benefits. The players are more perceptive than we sometimes think and can see right through us if our hearts aren’t in it!
I’ll finish where I started. I am by no means an expert on video analysis but I am a passionate believer in it’s benefits and I am learning each day in the hope that one day I can start a blog post with the line ‘I am an expert on video analysis….’
For anyone interested in learning more about video analysis in sport in general, I highly recommend the website TheVideoAnalyst.com