Player Development

Video Analysis in Sports: Benefits & How to Use

Simply recording games isn't enough anymore. Here’s why and how your team should be doing video analysis to improve individual and team play this season.

by Griffin Lloyd

Former college athlete and video editor. Current content creator, sports enthusiast and dog dad.

Video analysis has always been used by teams for improving, but costs and technology historically meant that only professional teams could access this resource. Now, youth sports teams all over the country are using camera systems to identify strengths and weaknesses and develop strategies to improve team performance. Significant knowledge can be gained through this process, and more and more youth teams are beginning to understand that using video is key to competing at the highest levels.

Even if your players don’t have the time (or attention span) to watch an entire game back, automated video solutions like Trace are giving coaches, players, and parents the ability to receive personalized highlights and feedback after every game with ease.

Benefits of video analysis

In a recent survey of youth soccer club directors across the nation, Trace found that clubs’ top priority for 2023 was to support player development, with 61% of clubs planning to expand the use of video for this purpose.

61% of clubs plan to expand the use of video in 2023

And there are plenty of reasons behind this increase in popularity among teams across almost all sports; from skill development to communication and beyond, the key benefits of video analysis include: 

  • Faster player development 
  • Objective performance measurement and coaching
  • Immediate, fast feedback
  • Better collaboration with coaches and team members
  • Progress that you can track
  • College recruiting

Speed up development

Roughly 80% of our learning is done visually, and this is especially true for young athletes who grew up consuming social media and have shorter attention spans. Video analysis makes it easy for coaches and players to see the good and bad about athletes’ techniques and quickly make adjustments. Video also allows players to review their own performance after every game and quickly understand how to prioritize training and level up their performance.

Objective performance measurement

Have you ever tried to tell a player something you noticed on the field, but they felt differently when making the play? Video is extremely useful for coaches as an objective way to give players feedback because video doesn’t lie. This means seeing exactly what happened during the play and what led to the win or the loss.

Immediate feedback

Some players can spend an entire season trying to figure out exactly what they’re doing wrong and how they can break bad habits. Video analysis offers the chance to view performance within hours of each game and make adjustments week over week. We recommend analyzing game film within 48 hours of the game. Trace, for instance, delivers every player’s personalized highlights within hours of each game, made possible by the advanced AI software in the product.

Improve collaboration & communication

Chemistry is invaluable to any successful team, and reviewing game film as a team is essential for building strong communication and collaboration. It gives every player the ability to see how their performance affects the team as a whole, which then gives players motivation to train harder. Video analysis as a team covers the positive and negative aspects of play from past games, and hearing input from all team members can help discover the best option or strategy for future games.

streamline communication and improve performance with video

Track progress

When players can see the results of their training, they are more inspired to put in work and have a better experience through the season. Video analysis helps players improve from game to game, but it also gives them a permanent record of how they are improving from the first game of the season to the last game. As a coach, putting game film in front of each player with a point of emphasis on development and improvement will keep the focus on training sessions and topics heading into next week’s game.

Recruiting tool

Video analysis is a part of every college sport, and college coaches now expect younger athletes to have some understanding of this process when evaluating prospects. Sports camera systems like Trace have built-in tools to make gathering and sharing highlights with college coaches a simple and easy process. Coaches can easily navigate between the highlight and the full-game context so they have helpful insight on the talent you’re up against, the score of the game in critical moments, and more.

How to implement video analysis in your team

Now that we understand why this process is so crucial for even younger players and teams, how can you go about adding it to your team’s culture and schedule?

Plan weekly film sessions

If you’re not already doing video review sessions with your team on a weekly basis, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity for positive growth and improvement. Get the team together for the first fifteen minutes of practice and show them the most important learning moments from the past game. Show them your biggest takeaways (both positive and negative), and use that to frame their mindset for training and practice. Not only is it a great way to learn visually, but seeing things in action can help your team understand complex concepts quickly and retain information more effectively.

Assign homework for individual analysis

One of the quickest ways to start seeing improvement is by taking things off the field, and assigning homework to players can be simple and quick with a system like Trace. Quickly scan each player’s best moments during the game – identify three significant plays and share them with the player. Provide your feedback and insight and encourage them to review on their own. This will help them identify what they need to work on and stay accountable for their development.

Click here for an example from a current coach using Trace as homework with his players.

Use tactical playlists to plan practice

In order to improve your team’s play, it’s essential to focus on one element at a time and apply it in practice, and team playlists are a great way to do this. For example, Trace has pre-selected playlists so you can zone in on the areas that need improvement. For example, if you noticed your team’s defensive positioning was off during the game, scan the defensive playlists and review those moments with the team. You should acknowledge and show the team what was missing and use that week’s practice to focus on drills and game-like situations to improve.

How Trace can help

When it comes down to it, Trace is the best sports camera and tracking system to get the most out of your team, all without the hassle of a traditional video camera and editing software. Whether you’re sharing moments with the team or your friends and family, it’s never been easier to capture and save your team’s best moments.

Teams and clubs across the nation are partnering with Trace to give their coaches and players access to powerful features such as:

  • Recording – Trace’s AI-powered camera captures the game and automatically edits each player’s highlights – now with even more angles.
  • Highlights – automatically delivered to every team member’s inbox, every play is auto-tagged to make it easy to watch, analyze, and train skills.
  • Angles – MultiCam allows you to place your phone along the sidelines to capture even more angles for epic player highlights and better post-game analysis.
  • Playlists – coaches can create playlists to assign homework and view progress, and players can build playlists to share and showcase their skills.
  • Sharing players, coaches, and parents can easily share game video, player highlights, and playlists with college coaches, friends, family, and more.

By tracking individual and team performances through video and statistical feedback, coaches are able to make better decisions to improve their team and prioritize development. If you’re ready to get started on the road to improvement, fill out the form below!

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