The Catapult team are busy developing a revolutionary new analytics platform that seeks to integrate user needs within the tactical, technical and physical aspects of athlete and team performance. Driving this overhaul of the combination of the new hardware and software in the coming months is Product Development Manager Michael Regan.
A Sports Scientist who spearheaded Catapult’s sales approach in the US last year, Regan’s new role will be as the middle-man between Catapult and its clients with the approach to find out exactly what users want and deciding the direction of the technology based on feedback and desires. Regan says his new role will be an exciting one for athlete analytics.
“I’m excited to help drive what we do and how we do it, and how that influences the user experience,” Regan said. “Instead of us pushing stuff out to the user, we’ll let them have more of a say by manipulating some of the great innovations we come up with in-house to make everything more user friendly and usable. We’re really trying to hash out the end-case for our clients”.
Regan will also bring a lot of research to the product development by understanding the direction teams are headed with their enhancement needs and pulling together different experiences from around the world that they may not have even seen yet.
“You go to Collingwood and they start talking about one thing and it might tenuously link to something the Dallas Cowboys are doing and what West Bromwich Albion are doing, and can we put it all together to make something that does not only what they want but opens their eyes up to something they may not have thought of yet”.
“Things like specific algorithms for specific movements and correlating data between team performance and measures of outcome performance. The Australian and European way has traditionally been to isolate the physical and technical, whereas the American way is to drill in on the tactical and technical and ignore the physical, whereas there is a middle ground in there somewhere that no one is exploiting properly yet, and I think we can really help users to do that”.
Seeking to integrate the triad of performance – the physical, tactical, technical – Catapult will soon release an entirely new software platform which will feature iPhone and iPad applications.
“I think the use of the iPad app will be great for teams to have multiple users linked in and looking at the same data. So the coach can be looking at the same thing as the strength and conditioning coach, but then with the swipe of a button going back to what he wants to be looking at. Being able to customise the user experience over multiple devices, and easing the flow for a pressure environment”.
One of the key features of the new software will be its emphasis on graphical interfaces, the easy comparison between players, sessions and seasons, and being able to easily customise your own measures and metrics. Setting up templates will result in customised reporting that is literally one-touch.
“So you set up a report that addresses certain parameters, then you can email one version to the coach, one version to the trainer etc. You set that all up and then with one click at the end of practice you’re done”.
“The iPhone application will allow teams to streamline workflow during a session, as well as having multiple layers of analysis. Being able to periodise a session in real time and while roaming the sidelines, then being able to actually see athlete data on the iPhone”.
With an initial release of the new platform planned for the middle of 2013, Regan is looking beyond the release to an all-encompassing athlete analytical tool.
“Once this big innovation is done, my job will be to streamline the whole experience to becoming really focused so if a team wants to look at X, Y and Z I’ll find a way to work it out with them. Also facilitating links between our clients. Bridging the communication gap between teams in allied sports for mutual benefit.
My role will be trying to keep ahead of the curve a little, taking what the NFL is doing, the AFL, gymnastics or whatever and coming up with new parameters and new analysis points”.