Setting the Standard: Loughborough University Partners with Hudl to Provide Elite-Level Analysis 

One of the world’s lead­ing uni­ver­si­ties in sport are imple­ment­ing video analy­sis across a range of sport­ing codes with great suc­cess. Here’s how we help elite lev­el sport at Loughborough improve both on and off the field.

An absolute giant of University sport, Loughborough University set the stan­dard across the United Kingdom hav­ing won the British Universities & Colleges Sports cham­pi­onship for the past 40 years running. 

A tes­ta­ment to the strength of their elite ath­lete path­way can be seen in the 2016 Rio Olympics where over 80 stu­dents, grad­u­ates and Loughborough-linked ath­letes secured 12 medals — includ­ing five golds.

Loughborough head of per­for­mance sup­port Nathan Miller states there are three pil­lars that the vision for sport at the uni­ver­si­ty are based around.

  1. Winning com­pe­ti­tions on a nation­al and inter­na­tion­al stage as well as uni­ver­si­ty cham­pi­onships every year.
  2. Developing ath­letes dur­ing their time at University.
  3. Developing staff.

With a wide range of sport­ing codes being played at an elite lev­el at Loughborough, a video solu­tion needs to cater to the spe­cif­ic analy­sis points which vary great­ly from sport to sport. Loughborough sports per­for­mance analy­sis lead Andy Rhys-Jones explains how Hudl is effec­tive in this area.

With 16 dif­fer­ent sport­ing pro­grammes the needs and wants can dif­fer huge­ly and the way in which analy­sis will be deliv­ered is going to vary huge­ly,” said Rhys-Jones. However, the com­mon theme is the ath­letes and ana­lysts want some­thing they can real­ly rely on that’s con­sis­tent and the play­ers know they are going to get their analy­sis at the same time every week and can review how they did from one game and know they will have the same framework”. 

Rhys-Jones is also look­ing for­ward to intro­duc­ing the new and improved Hudl Sportscode into Loughborough’s elite sports per­for­mance programme.

Hudl Sportscode is a real­ly great new tool that we will be look­ing to intro­duce in the com­ing months with­in our per­for­mance sports and we are real­ly excit­ed about the IP cap­ture and mul­ti-angle cap­ture as well.” said Rhys-Jones. We are real­ly look­ing at how we can enhance our work­flows. whether that’s how things are stacked, how we enhance our code win­dows and the addi­tion­al pow­er of the script­ing tool that’s come in, It’s a real­ly excit­ing addi­tion for us.”

From a coach­ing per­spec­tive, women’s hock­ey head coach Brett Holland has Hudl to thank for pro­vid­ing detailed analy­sis with­in short peri­ods of time which direct­ly affects pos­i­tive results on the turf for his team.

Quite often in hock­ey we have games that fol­low on very quick­ly,” said Holland. Thinking back to last sea­son when we had our Premier League play­off we had a game Saturday evening and then Sunday morn­ing, so be able to put up key moments for the first game before Sunday’s game was crit­i­cal. We know going into that final game that we need­ed to win by a cer­tain goal dif­fer­ence so those key bits of detail we were able to get out of the video made the dif­fer­ence and we end­ed up win­ning the game by three goals. We were then pro­mot­ed and now we stand here as a top 10 team in the country.”

For Loughborough Lightning net­ball play­er Annabel Roddy using video has been a new skill that is prepar­ing her for a poten­tial career in elite sport. 

I’ve stepped up this year to the Superleague net­ball fran­chise and video is such a cen­tral part of our ses­sions,” explains Roddy. “ The rea­sons we lost games we could find out the rea­sons and it’s just that next lev­el elite where it’s not just you turn­ing up on the day, it’s you hav­ing pre­pared a plan know­ing exact­ly what you are going to come up against.”

Sarah Hunter is the England women’s rug­by cap­tain as well as Loughborough Lightning’s per­for­mance rug­by coach and is extreme­ly qual­i­fied to describe how impor­tant it is for stu­dent ath­letes to be using video to improve their game.

It’s used so much with­in sport now and at the very top lev­el that in order for you to reach that then you have to look at how you per­form because nat­u­ral­ly you have to be able to self-cri­tique your­self,” said Hunter. You have to be able to sit down with your coach­es and have one-to-one feed­back about how you are going to improve as an ath­lete but more so you have to be able to look at how the team is per­form­ing, how they can get bet­ter and how you play a crit­i­cal part in that.” 

Put sim­ply by coach Hunter, her expe­ri­ence using video at the a high­est lev­el of sport leads to a sharp conclusion.

I just don’t think that you could be a pro­fes­sion­al sports play­er these days with­out hav­ing used analysis.”