“You have to ask the right questions to move forward…to get better. There’s always an answer. If you don’t think there’s an answer, you’re not looking hard enough” – Bryson DeChambeau
Elite sports stars are often on the hunt for that extra edge in performances over the course of a season/year. Outside of their scheduled training programs (with a group or alone, depending on their sport), one-to-one training personal trainers, yoga instructors, sports psychologists, recovery rooms etc. – all of these are undertaken with a view to finding that 1% edge and drive performance improvements over the course of a calendar year or a season.
Take the case (controversial for some) of Bryson DeChambeau, a player dubbed by some as a “6 foot 1, 240-pound, protein shake-filled trailblazer”. DeChambeau is using data science & technology at an entirely different level in golf, one that is difficult for many traditionalists to accept.
Golf.com reports that he nicknames himself ‘The Casino’ – someone looking for tiny advantages everywhere & he has turned to data science and tech to provide these advantages. Some points to note (there are many more not included):
- He is a disciple of “The Golfing Machine” by Homer Kelly: a book that breaks down the motions in a golf swing into equations & formulas.
- DeChambeau partnered with Microsoft & Seattle-based startup Sensoria on a smart grip that analyses pressure on the club through the swing. His work with Microsoft has allowed DeChambeau to utilize data & cloud computing to improve his performance.
- He unconventionally made all his irons the same length.
- In 2020, in 6 weeks he added 37lbs to his body mass to increase driving power.
- 3D tech was used to measure the pressure distribution he was placing on the ground & also to lengthen his arm swing just a few inches.
- On the course, data allowed him to optimize where he was hitting his shots, how to play a particular course, what clubs to use in different conditions and he embraced machine learning to get the best routes around courses.
Some of his recent outcomes from this approach are:
- The average length of his drive in 2020 was 322.1 yards, up from 302.5 yards in 2019 (pgatour.com).
- He is averaging 1.1 strokes gained off the tee per round since June 2020 (essentially gaining a one-shot advantage by outdriving competitors).
- His continuous experimentation with his equipment has led the USGA to refuse to sanction some of his inventions.
- Some golf courses are forced into changing their setup for future events – moving tee boxes back, bringing some bunkers back into play. DeChambeau’s distance gains are making some change their approach to tournaments.
- Since June ’20, he played in 11 tournaments, winning 2 and securing a top 5 finish in 4 tournaments.
DeChambeau isn’t the only sports star to embrace data & tech in order to gain an edge (Cristiano Ronaldo – soccer, Neil Robertson – snooker, Steph Curry & James Harden – NBA to name a small few). He is on a mission to keep pushing boundaries and work on squeezing every element of performance out of himself in golf tournaments. What does this mean for the elite soccer player?
At PlayerStat Data, we offer accurate, intelligent, and bespoke performance data solutions for our elite player clients, launching first across the SSE Airtricity Premier & First Division. We watch each game across both leagues, collecting data on 70+ individual player performance metrics that our testing has shown to be of optimum value for the elite player (live testing across the 2020 LOI season & open-loop feedback from testers).
We have an intense focus on the accuracy & quality of our data insights – many players have complained of incomplete & inaccurate data outputs available to them by other data providers. A main reason for our early focus on the LOI is to ensure our data collection methods are as accurate as possible, devoting more resources to QC than to adding more leagues to our platform.
We stand out from the crowd with our customized, bespoke approach to data outputs. Centre Half for Team A may want to see facets of their data output from their performances, whereas Centre Half for Team B may want to see something different from their performances (in a data sense). Our market research suggests that between 65%-70% of elite players are looking for that edge in their performances, which can help them to realise elements of their career progression plans also.
Player access to their own bespoke data outputs has powered performance improvements across soccer & many other sports globally – now it is time for these opportunities to be made available to the League of Ireland players.
No two players are alike and as a result, no two data reports should be alike.
PlayerStat Data gives full control of the data output to the client – allowing THEM to see what THEY want to see from THEIR data. This is a unique offering for the League of Ireland and importantly for the players, it is also a very affordable offering too. Investment in marginal gains such as those our data reports will provide can be extremely fruitful over the course of a season and beyond.
“At PlayerStat Data, we don’t drop the ball; we drop DATA”
Contact us across social media or by email at email@example.com.