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  • Ste Mills

How Does Video Analysis Increase Understanding And Knowledge?


Foreword by Ollie Seymour


Video analysis has increased in popularity over the decades and come a long way from the pen and paper of old. This is largely thanks to technological advances and the increasing understanding of the vital role video analysis plays within high-performing teams. It is now a compulsory tool for creating an optimal training environment and allows athletes to improve their skills and game performance. It does this by enhancing the players' understanding and increasing their knowledge of the game. In sports, many decisions are made on mental resilience and physical ability, but with video analysis, players and coaches can make smarter choices when deciding on strategies during a game, especially those used during match situations.


To discuss this topic, we have invited the Head of Performance Analysis at Warrington Wolves and long-time AnalysisPro friend, Ste Mills, to share his insight on how he works at a top Rugby League club. Ste has been using Nacsport for many years and is a great ambassador for the video analysis industry as a whole. You can find links to Ste’s previous blogs at the bottom of this page.



 

Ste Mills - Head of Analysis at Warrington Wolves
Ste Mills - Head of Analysis at Warrington Wolves

CONTENTS


The whole point of video analysis in my eyes is to assist players and coaches in gaining more knowledge about the chosen topic or to aid the coaches to make decisions in their day-to-day workflows. Bearing this in mind, everything we do as an analysis department at Warrington Wolves is there to make an impact. If it doesn’t make an impact on anything, then we investigate the workflow to see if we can amend it to get the effect we want.



WARRINGTON WOLVES WORKFLOWS

So when it comes to the workflows we implement every day at Warrington Wolves, we have carefully thought out these plans and what we deliver and analyse. In this blog, I will give you a little insight into our analysis workflows and how we implement them.


At the club, we currently have 16 Nacsport Licences and use the online sharing platform, Sharimg. We utilise these solutions across the different groups, ranging from the Men's First Team, Women's Team and the Scholarship Team. We have a variety of versions of Nacsport that cater for each analyst/coach's needs and we aim to push the software to its boundaries, utilising every feature.


To give you an insight into how we use Nacsport, I want to talk about a build-up to a first-team match in the Bet Fred Super League. To start with, we film and upload every single aspect of the training we do (whether that’s a skills session or field session) to Sharimg, as this is where all players and coaches can view the training footage. We can marry this up with any analysis we do using the XML file from Nacsport and the two seamlessly link together in an easy-on-the-eye app either on phones, iPads or laptops.



List of Clips on Sharimg
List of player clips on Sharimg



In terms of registering data on Nacsport, we have a variety of templates that we use. We have a template for every opposition which allows us to register the usual actions we look for in games but also we have a category for every opposition player within the template. Working this way allows us to create some engaging workflows which are easy for us and players to view and work with.


We use Nacsport to build our opposition previews. A substantial part of my role as Head of Analysis is to review our opponents' last 3 matches and build a comprehensive bank of clips for the coaches to review. This ultimately enables them to see the opposition's pattern of play and allows them to build their preview video, which they then show to players so they can gain an insight into our next opponent. For the ‘Opposition Preview Meetings’, the coaches use Nacsport in presentation mode and use the companion iPhone app Nacsport Remote to control their videos as they present. This setup allows for an ideal learning environment for everyone involved, giving the coach full control as he is engaging with the players to ensure their understanding.



Head Coach Daryl Powell reviewing clips on Nacsport
Head Coach Daryl Powell reviewing clips on Nacsport

PROVIDING FEEDBACK

As the week progresses, the coaching team and I will upload specific videos onto Sharimg for the different positional groups to watch. This process gives the team time to evaluate the videos and provide their feedback in the next meeting we have. For us, we have found this gets the best interaction with players and they come out of a short meeting with a strong message of what the coaches want. We have found this to be such a useful tool for us and would recommend it to anyone who is thinking of engaging ways to share work between players and staff.


One thing that doesn’t often get spoken about in the analysis world is what exactly goes into analysts’ and coaches’ presentations to players. With our previews and reviews, we have a mixture of elements that includes training footage, opposition footage, our match vision, PowerPoint slides & animated drawings (using KlipDraw). We are always working on new ways to make the presentation engaging and concise to keep players engaged to maximise learning and growth.


EMPOWERING THE TEAM

To complete our analysis cycle, the final process starts as soon as our match week has ended. I enter a dark room for 5-6 hours straight after the game into the early hours to trundle through the game and pick out the key areas we are looking for. In a usual game, I would create around 3500-4000 registers. We then feed selected parts of the analysis back to the players for their individual reviews and the rest will be fed back to the coaching staff, which also feeds back into our database that we collate.



Ste Mills video analysis setup
Ste's matchday setup


All of the analysis I carry out gets put onto the 7 computers we have in the players’ ‘Analysis Room’. Here we use Nacsport Viewer so players have access to all of their individual clips but also have access to team and unit clips, which they then build up into their own presentation list that they want to review with a coach. This is then followed up by an individual review held by the coach where they discuss various areas of their game. All in all, we do this process so we have plenty of coach/player interaction and player development is at the top of our priorities within our coaching organisation.



Warrington Wolves - Video Analysis Room
Warrington Wolves - Video Analysis Room


There are many moving parts to our analysis department at Warrington Wolves. However, I wanted to give you a small insight into some of the workflows we run to give players every opportunity to improve their understanding and knowledge. As a team, we are constantly looking to evolve, improve and learn and this is all because of one reason, to make an IMPACT.



 

Hopefully, Ste's article has given you a better idea of the potential benefits video analysis can have for your team's understanding and improvement. More importantly, we hope it has inspired you to implement a video analysis workflow similar to Ste's in your own team. We believe in helping aspiring grass root sports teams mirror the top-flight workflows and processes to increase understanding and maximise win potential. If you want to read more about mirroring the top-flight teams you can read our blog about the MMAD Rugby Academy in Wales to see what's possible.



 

STE'S PREVIOUS BLOGS


STE'S WORKFLOW SOLUTIONS

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