10 Tips for Creating Your First Sports Performance Analysis Template

By Nacsport

13-March-2017 on Tips

8 minute read

Ok, you want to get into sports performance analysis, right? You’ve downloaded the free 30-day Nacsport trial, or maybe you’ve just thrown caution to the wind and bought the program outright. Now your feeling a little lost, you’re not sure what to do with this powerful piece of code installed on your computer.


Well, first off, we’d like to suggest doing one of our Starter Courses. This will take you through all the steps and processes you need to get your analysis work off the ground. Secondly, we suggest that the first thing you do is create your first functional performance analysis template. In this article, we’ll give you a few tips on exactly how to do this.

1. Start with a Pencil and a Piece of Paper


This is the first tip and, maybe, the most important one of all! A good template is the key to a good analysis so, before you even switch on your computer, it’s a good idea to jot down some ideas about what exactly you want to achieve with your analysis.


Do you want to compare some basic stats between your team and opponent? Corners? Shots? Freekicks? Possession? Write them down, maybe sketch a couple of ideas for your button template.


The more time you spend on this process, the easier it will be when you open the software.


Watch this video by our good friends over at Analysis Pro:


2. Use Different Colours and Shapes



The ability to change the colour, size and shape of buttons isn’t only for the purpose of beautifying your template (although we have seen some crackers). It’s also an important element in the organisation of your template.


For example, if you are doing an analysis of your team compared to an opponent, the usual thing to do would be to assign a colour to each team, maybe an approximation of the colour of their jersey.


Likewise, you can assign different shapes, either by choosing a polygonal shape or drawing free hand, to distinguish between each type of button, e.g. square for a shot, circle for a corner, etc.

3. Change Button Sizes.


Play with the size, shape and colour to create a template which is organised and visually appealing. Resize buttons so they fit logically into gaps in your template. Don’t just stick to defaults or you’ll end up with a template which is dull and lifeless.

4. Inactive Buttons.



Inactive buttons can be used to bring another level of organisation to your template. These can basically be used as backgrounds to place other buttons on top of.


For example, you could create two large inactive buttons on which you can place active buttons for each of your team members, grouping them together nicely.


Or you could create three inactive buttons representing each part of the pitch, defence, midfield and attack, and organise your team’s button according to position. You can change the colour so, why not do the same for an opponent?

5. Chain of Notation.



When you start tagging actions on the video, you’ll eventually find that there are sequences of Categories and Descriptors (from Basic+ onwards) that you use often. For example, action + player + good or bad + area of field.


This is what’s known as the “chain of notation” and it’s logical to place buttons that are often in the same chain together in a logical sequence, e.g. from left to right. Or vice versa.


Being aware of the chain of notation will ease the tagging process.

6. Pictures.


You want to create a button for each member of your team? Add their headshot to the button instead of their name. This can make it easier to identify the player, especially if you are more of a visual learner, making the tagging process quicker and easier.


Adding a picture to your buttons is simple. Click on the button, click “Add Picture” in the interface menu, choose the photo you want and…done.


7. Hotkeys.



You can assign a Hotkey to any button you create, making it possible to tag actions with the keyboard instead of the mouse. This can make the registration process a breeze and much quicker.


There is a total of 173 hotkeys which can be assigned, but you can get great results by just using a few of them. “S” for shot? “C” for corner? Numbers assigned to players?


How you do it is entirely up to you, but Hotkeys are huge in terms of easy tagging.

8. The Grid.



The “Grid Reference” (activate in “Window” tab), along with the options "Adjust button to line" (just below Grid Reference)and "Align selected buttons with the reference button" (right-click on template) can help you create a more ordered template by snapping buttons into straight lines and columns.


An ordered workplace is a happy workplace, as they say!

9. Exclusions.



Exclusions are great for measuring actions such as ball possession. Create two buttons “Team A” and “Team B”, set them both to “Manual Mode” (in “Behaviour” tab) and set them both to exclude the other (also in the “Behaviour” tab, appears when both buttons are set to “Manual Mode”).


This means that when one is activated, the other is deactivated automatically. By doing this you can measure the time one is active and the other not, giving you an accurate measurement of possession time (can also be set to percentage).


Check out this post for more detail on measuring ball possession.

10. Layering.


You can overlay buttons in different layers, which can be useful if you don’t have much space to spare. If you need to overlap buttons to make them fit on the template, make sure that they are organised logically. Maybe you want Categories at the front and descriptors at the back, for example.


To do this, right click on button and “Bring to Front / Send to Back”.


Now Get to Work!


So, there you have it, 10 Tips to Help You Create Your First Button Template. We hope this is useful in getting you up and running with the software. If you have any other questions about this process or anything else about the software, get in contact with us at info@nacsport.com or find us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.


If you are not yet a Nacsport user, click here to download a FREE 30-day trial of the software and get to work on your first template!



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