Sports Performance Analyst – as a Career

 

Performance analysis in sport has become a key element of preparation for competition at varying different levels – but did you know that a small company in Galway, Avenir Sports, has been the catalyst in the development of the discipline, in Ireland, and the provision of the associated training and education.

Ask any number of people involved in the game of Soccer, Rugby, Hurling or Gaelic Football – or any other team game for that matter – to define what Performance Analysis is, you are likely to get a variety of answers. 

Go one step further and ask a number of individuals to analyse what has just happened in a particular game and the range of answers is guaranteed to cover a much broader spectrum. The very fact that you will get a plethora of responses points to traditional ‘back of a fagbox’ methods being anything less than precise.

Performance Analysis is a relatively new discipline in sport, in Ireland, only really coming into focus in the last ten years or so. However the rapid deployment of Performance Analysis across a range of sports has been facilitated by the advances made in software and video equipment in the past few years.

Essentially Performance Analysis is an invaluable aid to the coaching process. It provides, through the use of video, an accurate record of ‘what happened ‘, ‘when it happened’ and ‘what were the consequences’ in terms of either individual or team performance.

Avenir Sports

Tommy Conneely, then a regional development manager with the IRFU set up Avenir Sports because he had the foresight to see that all major sports would come to use Performance Solutions at elite level, where the quest for competitive advantage is a constant.

Painstakingly he has built the company and now they work with some of the country’s leading teams including all I.R.F.U. national teams and the four provinces in rugby, all FAI international teams in soccer.

In the G.A.A, they work with the footballers of Dublin, Tyrone, Kerry, Galway, Meath, Armagh, Mayo, Cavan, Waterford and Tipperary and the hurlers of Tipperary, Galway, Cork, Waterford, Clare, Limerick and Wexford.

Additionally they are the Performance Analysis Partners to the Irish Hockey Association as well as the Football Association of Ireland and have links with various other Sports Governing bodies within Irish Sport

Individually they have training and supported virtually all the top analysts in the sporting arena in Ireland today. In a recent interview with The Eye, Connacht Rugby’s head analyst  Simon Kavanagh gave us some insights into the whole process.

Now, Avenir have launched an Experiential Learning Course, based at their Performance Solutions in Galway, at Salthill Devon’s Drom campus

 

Performance Analysis (utilising SportsCode, Hudl software) Notational Analysis
Wearable technology including GPS Videography
Role of the Performance Analyst Sports Coaching
How to start your own P.A. business Communication Skills

 

Practical experience / placements with International, Professional, Inter- County and Club / School across number of Sports will form a defining section of our courses.

The programme runs over a four month period will be linked to projects run in conjunction with the FAI, the FAI Coach Education Department, Munster Rugby, Connacht Rugby and Galway G.A.A.

Graham Shaw, the head coach to Irish Women’s Hockey, said, “I am happy to endorse the Avenir Sports Performance Solutions experiential learning course and I would see value in a potential ‘Performance Analyst’ gaining this unique experience.

If you are looking for a career in sports analysis, this is a wonderful opportunity – full details available here . An opportunity to work with and be taught by the best! Now if only I was 30 years younger!

About the Author

Pete Kelly
Pete Kelly has an eclectic interest in all sports and already writes regularly for Extra Time (www.extratime.ie), predominantly about Galway United F.C. but he has been known to write on a broad spectrum of sports. He is the media guy for the Galway Cup, producing the video blogs during the tournament with Avenir Sports. He has coached since the 1970’s, winning an All-Ireland Schools title with St. Enda’s and managing and/or coaching countless Salthill Devon Football Club teams in addition to Galway League and Connacht teams. Away from the field, Pete is a communications professional with his own business, 15 Eleven Communications, developing websites and devising digital marketing strategies, writing and teaching.