December 15, 2011
This month I wanted to look at how technology can help coaches. I recently read the article "Tablet Computers are a Game-changer in Professional Sports," by John Couwels that discussed how "watching tape" is evolving. I don't know how many hours of my life were spent watching and breaking down film, both as a player and a coach. Even as a head track coach I used film to help my athletes improve their performance. Technology was an important asset in doing that.
I would plan a filming practice for running and for field events. I would use two cameras to supply different angels of the event. I would then use iMovie to combine the different views, and then separate the film for each athlete. I would then send their section to them over iChat. The athletes would watch the film on their own and then later we would sit down together to talk about the film. It sounds like a lot of work, but it is easy to manipulate digital film.
And yes, there is an app for that. One app is Coach's Eye (cost $4.99) that allows a coach to shoot film and break it down right then. The film can be slowed down, use the drawing feature to highlight parts of the video and record audio or visual commentary for each section. There are apps for all aspects of coaching. From clipboards (last weekend I saw an elementary basketball coach use his iPad to instruct his team), to tracking playing time and other paperwork coaches deal with. One example of this is Coaching Assistant. As technology continues to advance, so does the opportunity to use the technology to improve all areas of the student's life. Share your success with us on Facebook or with me on Twitter (jdog90).