Performance data in professional sport demands a specialized level of education to understand the meaning of the numbers being produced. Beyond Pulse aims to simplify this process. Our technology provides coaches with four simple health and performance indicators that serve as a guide to analyze practice sessions and games with a simple click or a swipe. So, allow us to introduce the four key metrics to you:
1. Heart Rate
Our main use for Heart Rate is to measure the amount of time that players spend working above 80% of their maximum – coined the “Red Zone”. With this information we are able to establish a marker for the internal load of an activity for the entire group. Coaches can then tailor the session design in practice to optimize improvements in physical performance.
For example, you would anticipate more time spent working in the Red Zone if players were working at a demanding intensity for long periods of time – possibly a match. In contrast, a lower amount of time in this zone would be expected when players are not working at a physically demanding level – possibly a passing activity focused on refining technique with minimal movement.
It is important to note that the Heart Rate can be very “noisy” and every player has a unique heart rate response based on genetics and other factors. There are a number of external elements that can influence a player’s heart rate response, such as sleep, nutrition, hydration, stress and sickness!
2. Active Participation
This is the metric we are particularly excited about! Active Participation (AP) represents the amount of time players are considered active within a session – movement beyond a slow walking pace. We believe this measurement to be vital because oftentimes young players are not getting enough physical activity at the right intensities in training sessions. There should be a minimum level of participation for every player so that we can maximize the efficiency of time spent out on the field with their coaches. AP is shown as an overall team percentage on the coach dashboard with the ability to view each player’s own AP score.
For example, if the players are participating in an activity where every player is engaged, with few stoppages and a continuous flow throughout, this will likely generate a high level of AP – something we believe is essential in youth soccer due to the health benefits associated with regular physical activity! In contrast, if players are not moving or are stood in lines waiting their turn, or if a coach is simply talking too much, this will ultimately result in a lower AP – something we believe should be kept to a minimum at the youth level!
This metric tells us how far each player ran in meters. We use the accelerometer inside the Smart Belt to calculate the player’s distance through a combination of the step count, stride rate and the stride length of each individual. So whether the player walked, jogged, ran, or sprinted, we can show this via our dashboard across different running zones:
- Low Intensity (Walking)
- Medium Intensity (Jogging)
- High Intensity (High Speed Running)
- Maximum Intensity (Sprinting)
Finally, using the accelerometer once more, we are able to determine High Speed Running for each player. Essentially this reveals the percentage of an activity at which a player spends running above 60% of their maximum speed. We can show this percentage in a practice or game which is a valuable indicator for the coach!
What makes BP special is that our system has the ability to highlight trending data to help better understand coaching behavior, activity design and player workload. We are able to provide a unique insight into the coaching process at the youth level, something which has seldom been seen before! Therefore, we encourage coaches to experiment with their coaching activities and practice designs to see how they can influence the data being generated. Check out our blog titled “The Coaching Toolkit” for an exploration into the simple techniques all coaches have at their disposal that can bear a profoundly significant influence on the data your teams generate!