Why collect data?

All performers want to get better at what they do, but how do they know which area of their performance they need to develop?

Gathering data on your performance can give you an idea of strengths and areas for improvement.

Various methods can be used to gather data, depending on the nature of the activity.

Why collect data - identify strength in performance, monitor progress, plan targets, identify weakness, establish baseline measurement, aid motivation, measure success

Gathering data is useful because:

  • It helps identify or confirm a problem (weakness) exists
  • It identifies strengths in your performance
  • Establishes baseline measurement criteria
  • Provides information with which to measure the success of implemented improvements
  • It can aid motivation when training
  • It allows you to plan targets and short/long term goals.
  • Data collection also acts as a good method of monitoring your progress in an activity as you can complete it at the start of a programme of work/training programme and again at the end to measure improvement

In order for data collection to be useful, the method used must be:

  • Relevant to the performer, the activity and weakness
  • Accurate to provide a true reflection
  • Valid measures what it aims to measure
  • Reliable capable of consistent conditions and repetition at a later date
  • Objective non-bias, produce a consistent result irrespective of the tester
  • Measurable to allow for comparison at a later date
  • Practicality easy/simple to carry out and easy to interpret, opponent(s) of similar ability and completed for a substantial period of time

There are two main types of data collection: subjective data collection and objective data collection

  • Subjective data – is data which has an element of personal opinion, eg a self-analysis or questionnaire completed by yourself
  • Objective data – is data which is gathered in a more controlled way usually by an observer, eg a match analysis sheet or a recognised fitness test