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    1. Top | #1
      agold is offline
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      New Coaching Method

      After matches, many players coaches, and teams analyze video point for point, seeing percentage of forehands hit, winning percentage on serves returned on forehand or backhand, etc.. The info is then used to figure out what the player needs to improve.

      The reason a coach or player might do this is that they notice weaknesses that they would not notice just by watching the video. So why wouldn't this work during a match? What if a coach has a notebook out and marks down, after each point, some data, for a bunch of criteria. From service type to forehand down the line percentage vs crosscourt percentage to high toss vs low toss serves, amount of points won vs lost for each type of serve, etc.. The coach could take down a lot of data. Then when the game is over the coach will know exactly what is losing the player points and can help.

      Might this help? Instead of thinking of a strategy based on watching, think of it based on real data during the match.\

      Has this been done before? Any thoughts?

    2. Top | #2
      ttmonster is offline
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      I am not 100% sure but I think I have seen Ariel Hsing's father doing this during her matches ... , if somebody here knows her/parents they might be able to tell
      Quote Originally Posted by agold View Post
      After matches, many players coaches, and teams analyze video point for point, seeing percentage of forehands hit, winning percentage on serves returned on forehand or backhand, etc.. The info is then used to figure out what the player needs to improve.

      The reason a coach or player might do this is that they notice weaknesses that they would not notice just by watching the video. So why wouldn't this work during a match? What if a coach has a notebook out and marks down, after each point, some data, for a bunch of criteria. From service type to forehand down the line percentage vs crosscourt percentage to high toss vs low toss serves, amount of points won vs lost for each type of serve, etc.. The coach could take down a lot of data. Then when the game is over the coach will know exactly what is losing the player points and can help.

      Might this help? Instead of thinking of a strategy based on watching, think of it based on real data during the match.\

      Has this been done before? Any thoughts?

    3. Top | #3
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      I do think a good coach, if he is watching you knows where you win points, how you lose points, what you do well, what you are weak at. So, without it needing to be mathematical, they sort of do something like that without the same kind of calculations but with the observance of the same basic material.


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    4. Top | #4
      Ilia Minkin is offline
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      Apparently any reasonable high-level coach or a coach assistant does this.

      How do you add something to your learning?

      I started to do more tactical analysis. Sascha Nimtz who I played before in Tünder with does statistics for the DTTB with video analysis.

      Are the statistics similar to your feelings or do you get surprised sometimes?

      There are surprises, I think I have a aggressive backhand flick, the analysis confirm this as well. I win a lot of direct points from it, however even if I don’t win a straight point with the backhand flick I get into a good position in the rally to win the point. On the other hand the analysis shows that I'm in a disadvantage after the 3rd ball after the flick, I never really realized this.

      Could this give you an extra thrust to your career?

      The analysis can be destroying especially against Ma Long. After my apparently good backhand flick and the second ball. If I can change that and use my strengths against him better, by having a good connection between my strength and avoid my weaknesses then the game against him can be a lot more open.
      http://www.tabletennisdaily.co.uk/fo...Ovtcharov-2016!

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    6. Top | #5
      Der_Echte is offline
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      Analytics have been around forever by perceptive folks. When used with some good judgment it can be useful. Many modern people get into so many scenarios it clouds initiative and sound decisions in a match.

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    8. Top | #6
      songdavid98 is offline
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      This isn't anything new.

      I have definitely seen this done before; specifically I think I have seen this done with Alan Chen. It is quite interesting, because it can reveal something about playstyle that you might not have noticed.

      It can also uncover weaknesses or changes on both players that may have been too subtle to notice by watching.For example, the data you get can reveal that you are using less forehands than usual. Or perhaps you are attacking less than usual, or perhaps you aren't getting you're third ball attack.

      Have you ever had matches that, when you try to look back on them to remember why you lost, you can't remember a thing? A record of data is really useful for that.
      There are lots of things that a record can be used for.

    9. Top | #7
      Gene Tuttle is offline
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      We called getting too much data "paralysation by information". As Der Echte says Data mining and analytics has been around for a while. It has really gotten big in baseball where some teams use the data like its a religon.
      Last edited by Gene Tuttle; 06-05-2016 at 11:05 AM.

    10. Top | #8
      agold is offline
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      Thanks for all the responses. Just one note: this is specifically about analytics DURING the game, not looking at a video and analyzing like they do in baseball (figuring out the shift and what not). But based on your reply, it seems like math during games is not new. So here is my follow up question:

      It costs tons of money to bring a coach to your games. So what if, instead of brining a coach, you bring a friend or something or someone that doesn't know anything about table tennis, you could spend a few minutes with them before the tournament day demonstrating how to analyze points. And then during the tournament, the friend could just be watching you and taking analytical notes, just tallies, instead of needing to actually know anything about the game. And then between games the person could tell you exactly where you are winning and losing points, so you change.

      Any thoughts about this? Having a non-table tennis player analyze matches?

    11. Top | #9
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      New Coaching Method

      My first thought is, it would be pretty dangerous to your game to have someone who doesn't REALLY understand table tennis try to do this for you.

      Even having someone lower level than you who doesn't understand the game as well as you would be dangerous to have trying to take data.

      Why? Because there are things that will happen that you understand that they don't. Part of higher level play is a better understanding of spin and strategy. And since most points are won or lost in the first 3-5 balls, you would be asking them to take data on something that is invisible to them.


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      Last edited by UpSideDownCarl; 06-05-2016 at 02:37 PM.

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    13. Top | #10
      palguay is offline
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      I have worked on data analytics and this is pretty useful. I think this is very hard for people who do not understand technology to realize the importance of analytics. The argument is not that this can replace good coach but just looking at some statistics can give you information on what areas you are making mistakes and it's easy to figure out patterns. This should be looked at something that can assist a coach to make better decisions rather than replace a good coach.

      I am currently working with brain researchers for my project brainturk brain training. There is only a limited amount of information that a person can keep in his head so even experienced coaches have a limit of what they can analyze in their head. I had read somewhere that the Chinese team has a analytics team to help them.

      I had tried to implement this in my app but it was not usable in real time, so i am looking at how to make an interface that is easy to use.

    14. Top | #11
      izra is offline
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      tried it. as you are writing down the forced and unforced errors, the number of attacks initiated, points won by either power or placement... you really lose focus of what is important and what is not. too many stuff you could write down, if you have a good understanding of the game you can just look at a couple of points and do a much more accurate analysis.

      now, having someone who doesn't understand write all this stuff down would make even less sense. either the person would have to choose what to write down and what to leave out (leaving out a lot of important stuff because of their lack of understanding) or there would be too many things written down and it would be impossible to distinguish what is important and what isn't.

      after my player finishes a match i sometimes chat with their parents and they almost always have the right idea of what was happening, but focus on the wrong details and have the wrong idea why it was happening and what would have been the best course of action in that situation.


      not saying data analysis is wrong though, but you have to record the video and watch it later when you have enough spare time.
      Last edited by izra; 06-05-2016 at 04:21 PM.

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    16. Top | #12
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      Quote Originally Posted by izra View Post
      tried it. as you are writing down the forced and unforced errors, the number of attacks initiated, points won by either power or placement... you really lose focus of what is important and what is not. too many stuff you could write down, if you have a good understanding of the game you can just look at a couple of points and do a much more accurate analysis.

      now, having someone who doesn't understand write all this stuff down would make even less sense. either the person would have to choose what to write down and what to leave out (leaving out a lot of important stuff because of their lack of understanding) or there would be too many things written down and it would be impossible to distinguish what is important and what isn't.

      after my player finishes a match i sometimes chat with their parents and they almost always have the right idea of what was happening, but focus on the wrong details and have the wrong idea why it was happening and what would have been the best course of action in that situation.


      not saying data analysis is wrong though, but you have to record the video and watch it later when you have enough spare time.
      Excellent comment.


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    17. Top | #13
      agold is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by izra View Post
      tried it. as you are writing down the forced and unforced errors, the number of attacks initiated, points won by either power or placement... you really lose focus of what is important and what is not. too many stuff you could write down, if you have a good understanding of the game you can just look at a couple of points and do a much more accurate analysis.

      now, having someone who doesn't understand write all this stuff down would make even less sense. either the person would have to choose what to write down and what to leave out (leaving out a lot of important stuff because of their lack of understanding) or there would be too many things written down and it would be impossible to distinguish what is important and what isn't.

      after my player finishes a match i sometimes chat with their parents and they almost always have the right idea of what was happening, but focus on the wrong details and have the wrong idea why it was happening and what would have been the best course of action in that situation.


      not saying data analysis is wrong though, but you have to record the video and watch it later when you have enough spare time.
      Thanks for this. I see your and everyone else's point, and it seems like this really is never as good as having a good coach who knows about the game watching your match. But, if you only have access to someone who does not play the sport, could pure data taken during the match be at all useful?

    18. Top | #14
      izra is offline
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      Quote Originally Posted by agold View Post
      Thanks for this. I see your and everyone else's point, and it seems like this really is never as good as having a good coach who knows about the game watching your match. But, if you only have access to someone who does not play the sport, could pure data taken during the match be at all useful?
      the quality of the data would always be determined by the knowledge of whoever is writing it down. you have to spot why exactly things happened the way they did, was an "unforced" error really unforced? was the shot in question set up by a previous shot in some way? is the outcome of the rally actually dependent on the service or the receive of service?

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    20. Top | #15
      UpSideDownCarl is online now
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      New Coaching Method

      As Izra is saying, it is hard for someone who can't read spin and doesn't know the game well to actually take down useful data.


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    22. Top | #16
      izra is offline
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      it is hard even for someone who has some decent understanding of spin. you have to understand placement, footwork, stroke recovery, both player's strong and weak points...

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    24. Top | #17
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      You can train someone to look for things in your game even if they don't play at a high level. But you have to train them, not just let them do their best without telling them what to look for

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    26. Top | #18
      Der_Echte is offline
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      I agree with Carl and the others who advise against bringing a non-TT player to help in just about every case.

      Still, there are situations where it takes the eyes of someone looking at the big picture on a really simply scale to make an obvious comment like "Why do you keep selling out on FH step around hitting to his BH? You have lost the point just about every time you do that!"

      Since the player is zoned in and committed to that, they might need someone to pull the plank out from their eye.

      Today in doubles in a tourney, my partner had to tell me I lost every point I tried to step around on serve receive. I kinda knew it, but he had to tell me so I could play smarter.

      If the non-TT player can make simple observations, he could still be a help. Just keep it simple.

      Also, a point in FAVOR of ABE bringing a friend to a match... it never hurts to have someone you know support you from close and encourage.

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