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GPS trackers used in national team training
In a first of sorts for Indian football, the national football team implemented player tracking system in their ongoing Preparatory Camp at the DSK Dream City, the Home of DSK Shivajians Football Club in Pune.
The players wore the GPS systems inside their vests, resembling pretty much pictures of Lionel Messi and Zlatan Ibramovich which had gone viral some weeks back.
The development kicked-off under National Coach Stephen Constantine with sports scientist Danny Deigan monitoring the entire process.
“From now on, we will be using them in every training session, even during matches,” Deigan informedwww.the-aiff.com.
“FIFA approved them two months ago to be used during the match. It just needs to be approved by the Match Commissioner a day prior to the match,” he added.
“Australian Football has been using them for the last 14 years, Rugby have been using them since the last seven years. This is much more reliable than the video systems which have been used,” Deigan maintained.
“From the conditioning point of view it will make drills a lot more specific. I know how to supplement Football drills to make sure the Players are best prepared for the International standard.”
Constantine nods. “The way the game is going at the moment it’s pertinent that you have every possible piece of information in your hand to evaluate the Players, both mentally and physically,” Constantine toldwww.the-aiff.com. “The game has reached new levels of expertise and now we can monitor the Players while they are in training, as to how they do it and how long they do it. It’s invaluable in identifying a Player’s capabilities from the physiological point of view.”
‘Workaholic Danny’ as Constantine calls him, educates that the trackers will facilitate “prevention of injury.”
“The trackers will facilitate injury prevention. We know that we need to condition Players so that they are prepared for the match conditions,” Deigan states.
“It’s also about seeing where the Players are at the moment. We can see the maximum speeds which they have attained, their heart rates, speeds at which they work, and understand where they stand at the Global level.”
“Thirdly, we will use them to monitor our Players, seeing how they tolerate training load and we will be working with individuals to bring them up to the required standard.”
Constantine who has been toiling hard to streamline the U-19s and U-17s same manner as the Seniors, further informed that “the information be will be used with the U-19s and even the U-17s wherever possible.”
“I believe in the optimal utilization of resources of staff and equipment,” he stressed. “I need to thank Mr. Patel and Mr. Das for granting me the funds and believing in the concept of taking Indian Football to the next level.”
Deigan, who has earlier worked with the Institute of Sports in Australia, mentioned that he will get the “results live.”
With the Players gaining strides and the momentum increasing, Deigan peeped into his laptop by the side of the pitch.
“Come here,” he waved. “You can see the heart rate of every Player, the speed which they are running around and what their averages and totals are for the session.”
“Our Players cover a lot of distance but it’s not at the same intensity you will see in International Football and in higher Leagues. That’s something we will be working towards in the Camp.”