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Analysis Unit assists Commonwealth Games athletes

NZ’s first Performance Analysis Unit assists Commonwealth Games athletes

Athletes preparing for next month’s Commonwealth Games are amongst those benefiting from New Zealand’s first Performance Analysis Unit.

New Zealand Academy of Sport North (NZAS North) has established the country’s premier Performance Analysis Unit to provide coaches with a deeper level of insight to improve athlete performance.

NZAS North is part of SPARC’s (Sport & Recreation New Zealand) high performance network providing support to elite athletes and coaches.

“Having this kind of technology available to athletes and coaches helps give us that necessary edge that you need to win on the world-stage,” said SPARC Chief Executive, Nick Hill.

Performance Analysis is an emerging area in which coaches and athletes are given very specific feedback on different aspects of their performance, using cutting edge technology and statistical analysis, to present facts rather than opinions.

Members of the NZ Commonwealth Games team working with the Performance Analysis Unit include Sarah Ulmer’s coach Brendon Cameron. He used NZAS North’s GPS system in Melbourne during a recent reconnaissance of the Games road race and time trial courses, and was then given a detailed course analysis from the Performance Analysis Unit.

The NZ Men’s Hockey team are using NZAS North’s Performance Analysis Unit to analyse player movement and heart rate responses during game situations.

“The Performance Analysis Unit is helping to provide some potentially very exciting new information that will positively contribute to our substitution methods and tactical awareness at the Commonwealth Games and World Cup qualifying tournament,” said Black Sticks Coach, Kevin Towns.

Silver Ferns’ Coaches Ruth Aitken and Leigh Gibbs have obtained information on player movement from analysis of coded video during tests between New Zealand and Australia.

Bowls NZ High Performance Manager Ashley Light said that Performance Analysis has taken their ability to analyse, read and develop players and game plans to a new level. “There is no doubt in our minds that the innovative approach demonstrated by NZAS North will not only improve Bowls New Zealand’s medal chances at the Games but will assist other sports as well,” said Light.

NZAS North CEO Peter Pfitzinger said the Performance Analysis Unit is providing coaches with useful information about their athletes’ performance that they didn’t already know.

“With Performance Analysis, long held opinions are often challenged and found not to be accurate. This objective data helps coaches make more informed decisions,” said Pfitzinger.

Performance Analysis is widely used internationally, such as at the Australian Institute of Sport and the UK Sports Institute.

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